Prehnite is one the rarer and lesser-known gems. Thus, it is primarily a collector's stone. Although its use as a jewelry gemstone is not common, it is becoming more and more popular, especially because of recent finds and its excellent affordability. It is medium-hard, just slightly softer than quartz prehnite can be used for just about any jewelry type. However, it is unlikely that prehnite would be found in your local everyday jewelry retail store.
Prehnite is a translucent to transparent gem-quality hydrated calcium aluminum silicate. It was the first mineral to be named after an individual, and it was also the first mineral to be described from South Africa, long before South Africa became one of the most important sources for precious and semi-precious gems. It was first described in 1788 after it was discovered in the Karoo dolerites of Cradock, South Africa. Prehnite was later named after its discoverer, Colonel Hendrik von Prehn (1733-1785), a Dutch mineralogist and an early governor of the Cape of Good Hope colony.
Until recently, prehnite was a rare collector's gemstone, but new deposits have now made it more readily available. Its color is usually a soft apple-green, which is quite unique to prehnite, but it can also occur in rarer colors including yellow, orange and blue.
Prehnite occurs in the veins and cavities of mafic volcanic rock. It is a typical product of low-grade metamorphism. Primary deposits of prehnite are sourced from several locations around the world. Some of the most important deposits come from Africa (Namibia, South Africa), Australia (Western Australia, Northern Territory), Canada, China, Germany, Scotland, France and the United States (New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Virginia).
Rare, orange colored prehnite has been discovered in South Africa. Quebec, Canada is known to produce prehnite with distinct, individual crystals.
Prehnite is often cut and polished in cabochon. The most popular shapes include traditional oval, cushion and round shapes. Fancy shapes are not as popular, but can be found, including hearts, trillions and pears.
Prehnite is not known to be treated or enhanced in any way.
Avoid the use of any harsh chemicals or cleaners and avoid the spraying of perfumes and hairspray onto your prehnite. Like most colored stones, it is best to avoid ultrasonic cleaners and heat steamers. You can wipe down your stones down using a plain soft cloth and warm soapy water. Always be sure to rinse well to remove any soapy residue.
Always remove gems and jewelry prior to exercising, playing sports or performing harsh household chores.
Prehnite is a protective stone and it is also known as a stone of prophesy. It aids spiritual communication through meditation, visualization and even astral projection. It is considered to be a very powerful dream stone. It is believed to strengthen life force and energy. Prehnite is said to encourage composure, forgiveness and acceptance, therefore it is also excellent for meditation. Some also believe that prehnite helps sufferers of claustrophobia. Prehnite is also known as a stone of unconditional love. It is believed to connect the will and the heart.
Those who wear prehnite can experience strengthened intuition. Physically, prehnite is often used by crystal healers for treating and alleviating symptoms of gout, anemia, kidney disorders and thymus gland problems. It also helpful for shoulder and chest pain.
Disclaimer: this information is not to replace the advice of your doctor. Should you have any medical conditions, please see a licensed medical practitioner.