When and how was Onyx discovered?
The name Onyx comes through Latin from the Greek word ὄνυξ, which means ‘claw ‘ or ‘fingernail.’ Onyx is a mineral, like marble, granite or quartzite. It is part of the quartz mineral group and is a layered stone. Some of its layers may contrast.
What is the colour of Onyx?
You may see an onyx in black and white parallel layers or in brown and white layers called sardonyx. Another type of onyx is the carnelian onyx that is composed of red and white layers.
Where is Onyx Sourced?
It may be banded or solid black. Onyx can be found in Uruguay and bordering regions of Brazil, Afghanistan, India, Madagascar, Peru and the US. Baja California, and northwest Mexico were a major source for onyx until cheap imitations appeared on the market.
What is the hardness of Onyx?
Onyx history is rich with use for hard stone carving, due to its 7.0 standing on the Mohs scale, and for use in jewellery, where it is usually cut into a cabochon or beads.
What are the different types of cut of Onyx?
Onyx is usually cut into cabochons and beads, where it is mostly used in bracelets, necklaces, earrings, and rings. It is also an important cameo and intaglio stone, and carvings and small statues have also been cut from it.