A beautiful lapis lazuli carving which came to us straight from Afghanistan and is possibly one of the most beautiful pieces of lapis in our collection. Boasting magnificent colour, markings and distinctive layers, it's well included with iron pyrite or Fool's Gold and has been polished to perfection.
Some of the world's oldest lapis lazuli comes from Afghanistan and it's believed much of the material that was supplied to the Ancient Egyptian pharaohs came from one particular mine which has been worked for over five thousand years. Lapis lazuli from this region is now very limited and prices have risen dramatically because of the political situation which has resulted in a huge problem with exportation. Rocks of this grade are not readily available but when they do appear they're usually quickly snapped up often by collectors.
Although lapis lazuli is often referred to as a mineral it's not accurate because it is in fact a blue coloured metamorphic rock that's made up of several different minerals. Lazurite a deep blue to greenish blue coloured mineral is the primary constituent and main cause of its colour. The golden specs o iron pyrit that can often be seen in lapis lazuli are actually inclusions within the lazurite. Lazurite has been mined in the same region of Afghanistan as lapis lazuli for over 6000 years.
Weight (grams): 301.4
Size (cms) : 9.3 x 5.2