The history of Turquoise
The turquoise jewels were found buried with a 7,500-year-old Egyptian mummy. Turquoise beads dating back to at least 5000 BC. they have been traced back to Mesopotamia, the name of ancient Iraq. The Americas began mining it probably a millennium ago, and it has been discovered in burial sites from Argentina to the American Southwest.
Its name is said to come from the mistaken belief that it comes from Turkey, or possibly from the Persian word, firouze. Either way, its name has come to mean a particular sky blue color that is most popular in turquoise jewelry and is the alternative birthstone for December.
Presumably it was a white trader who first suggested to the Navajos that they make carvings on turquoise. Whatever the origin of the practice, it has survived to this day. Turquoise was generally believed to protect people from snake bites, poison, eye diseases, and falls. It was thought to impart power to its owner and call down rain for crops.
Turquoise was revered among Native Americans. The Navajo called turquoise was a piece of sky fallen to earth, the Apache believed it helped warriors and hunters aim more accurately, the Zuni thought it protected them from demons and the Aztecs reserved it for their gods, forbidding mere mortals to wear it . Even today, the refined beauty of a turquoise carving evokes a mystical response from people.
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