Scapolite is derived from the Greek word SKAPOS meaning Stick or Stem, referring to the long columnar formation of its crystal. It is a rare gemstone that is loved for its brilliance and vitreous luster.

Scapolite is also known as Wernerite, named after Abraham Gottlob Werner, its discoverer. It is also known as Mizzonite, Dipyre, Marialite and Meionite.

The first mention of Scapolite was in 1913 when it was discovered in Northern Burma (Myanmar) in the form of fibrous white, pink and violet crystals. Then in 1920 the yellow Scapolite was discovered in Madagascar and in 1930 in Brazil. In 1975 the purple variety of Scapolite sold as Petschite was discovered in Tanzania.

Scapolite is of a sodium calcium aluminum silicate chemical composition. It occurs in tetragonal, columnar crystal structure.

Scapolite comes in a range of colors that include yellow, orange, pink, violet, brown, grey and colorless. However, it is usually found in a honey yellow color. The most sought-after Scapolite is the bright purple.

Scapolite has a hardness ranging from 5.5 to 6 on the Mohs scale. It is transparent to translucent with a glass-like luster. It has a good cleavage.

Scapolite occurs with excellent transparency and often inclusions are found in large specimens. This results in the Cat’s Eye effect that is sharp and mesmerising. Cat’s Eye Scapolite usually comes in green, brown and grey colors.

Rainbow Scapolite is the rarer variety of Scapolite. It may be colorless and transparent or in darker and translucent greyish body color. It is the trade name given to the Scapolite that exhibits iridescent inclusions in the colors of the rainbow. These inclusions are usually composed of magnetite. One form of magnetite is the Loadstone. Magnetite is derived from the place where it was first found in Magnesia, Greece and named by Wilhelm Karl von Haidinger in 1845.

Iridescent gemstones include fire agate, ammolite, rainbow pyrite and labradorite (known as labradorescence).

In Scapolite these beautiful rainbow colors are displayed within the gemstone especially when you view the gemstone from different angles under a flashlight.

In daylight the iridescent inclusions appear brown-like in color.

To maximize this effect, Rainbow Scapolite is usually cut en cabochon. In some rare cases, Rainbow Scapolite can be faceted.

It is best to use Rainbow Scapolite in a ring because the hand or arm movement can catch the light better than from other parts of the body. However, due to its hardness of only 5.5 to 6, the ring must come in a protective setting.

Scapolite fluorescence strongly in different UV light. The pink colored Scapolite gives off an orange, pink fluorescence; and the yellow Scapolite gives off a violet, blue-red fluorescence.

Scapolite is classified as a collector’s stone due to its extreme rarity especially the transparent gemstone quality material.

The mottled variety of Scapolite can be found in Canada. It is an opaque material with beautiful mottled patterns. Burma, Brazil, Italy, Kenya, Madagascar, Mexico, Namibia, Norway and the United States are other notable sources of Scapolite.

Scapolite can be confused with golden topaz, golden beryl, chrysoberyl and tourmaline; what distinguish them is the fact that these other stones are much harder than Scapolite.

Scapolite is an alteration of Plagioclase Feldspar. Thus, it shares similar properties with other Felspar gemstones.

Scapolite is usually faceted. The shapes and cut styles include, oval, round, cushion, rectangular, trillion, pear and other fancy shapes. Scapolite is found in very large sizes, over 6 carats in weight. To maximize the Cat’s eye effect and the Rainbow Effect in translucent and transparent Scapolite gemstones, these are typically cut en cabochon.

Some violet colored Scapolite has been known to be treated or irradiated. It is usually the yellow Scapolite that is irradiated and turned into a lavender color. However, Scapolite also comes in a beautiful natural violet color. The difference between these two is that the colors of the natural violet scapolite does not fade with exposure to heat and light, the treated Scapolite does.

Trade names and associated minerals of Scapolite include:

Petschite (purple Tanzanian scapolite), cat's eye scapolite, violet scapolite, rainbow scapolite, pink scapolite, Wernerite, lavender cat's eye scapolite, violet cat's eye scapolite, pink cat's eye scapolite or 'pink moonstone', mizzonite, dipyre, marialite and meionite are trade names; whereas, diopside, plagioclase feldspar, olivine, peridot, are associated minerals.

Scapolite carries a powerful healing energy for both mental and physical disorders. It comes in a wide variety of colors; each color can help target a specific area of the body that is out of harmony and needs to be brought back into balance.

Scapolite is known as The Stone for Problem Solving because it can help the wearer in solving a life’s problem that had its origin in the past or present.

Scapolite is also known as The Stone of Achievement because it can provide inspiration where needed and bring about change and purpose in the wearer. It can help the wearer in decision making, balance the emotions and encourages the wearer to give love.

Due to its many colors, Scapolite is able to balance the flow of energy in all chakras.

Magnetite inclusions in Scapolite is often used in crystal healing because it is believed that its magnetic properties are very beneficial to the aura field of the body.

Scapolite is extremely rare and thus only known to true gemstone enthusiasts. Because of its lack of durability, it is best to use Scapolite as earrings, pins, pendants or brooches.

In order to maintain its beautiful brilliance and colors, clean your Scapolite with mild soapy water and a soft cloth. Remember to rinse well in order to remove all the soap residue from your beautiful Scapolite.