Lapis lazuli is an ancient rock that is made up of three main minerals: Lazurite, calcite , and pyrite. Lazurite is the mineral that makes it blue. Calcite is white and shows up as flecks (like speckles) or streaks. The best lapis lazuli has no calcite you can see. Pyrite is glittery and shows up as flecks and veins.
This rich-colored stone comes in blue to violet or purple.
Humans enjoyed lapis lazuli up to 6,500 years ago. Beads of this stone were discovered at a cemetery outside ancient temple walls in southern Mesopotamia, now known as Iraq.
Famous Lapis Lazuli
Renaissance painters used lapis lazuli to make “ultramarine” blue paint. Nothing could compare to its brightness.
what's in a name?
(noun)Lapis is Latin for “stone.” Lazuli is from a Persian word that means “blue.” So the name actually means “blue stone.”