Malachite is a beautiful green stone that forms in a variety of ways. The most commonly-seen is a massive form that is usually polished to reveal beautiful swirls and bubbles. This particular type comes from Congo and is relatively easy to find in a variety of prices and sizes - from tumbled stones to large display pieces. Malachite also comes in a fibrous form, with tiny, intricate, fiber-like crystals that have a satin sheen, as well as in small, sparking, gem-like crystals.
Physical Properties of Malachite
Malachite is a mineral from the copper carbonate hydroxide group. It forms in deep, underground spaces, where hydrothermal waters are present. These conditions often create fibrous stalagmites and stalactites, which resemble thick tree branches: if you cut them in half, you’ll see rings similar to those of the trees.
Malachite is intensely dark green and opaque. The massive form has beautiful mint-colored bands, often forming circles. Its hardness reaches 4 on the Mohs scale, making it a slightly soft stone. Its name comes from Latin and Greek words molochitis and molochites, both meaning "the mallow plant."
Malachite can be easily found in several locations, especially Africa (Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Namibia, etc.), the Southwestern US (Arizona), Mexico, France, and Israel.
History and Lore of Malachite
Malachite has been used throughout history around the world. One of the more famous artifacts after the Mayan civilization is the funerary mask of the Red Queen of Palenque (a Mexican city). This mysterious mask is fully covered with a mosaic made of tiny malachite fragments.
Similarly to the Mayans, ancient Egyptians believed that the green color was related to the circle of life: birth, life, fertility, death, and also resurrection. Their imagination of Eden was frequently referred to as the field of malachite, which isn’t surprising: historically, malachite was worn as a protection stone, shielding its wearer from lightning, diseases, and plagues. It was said to promote stable relationships, too.
In Medieval Europe, pieces of malachite with a sun engraved on them were really popular. People wore these types of talismans to prevent depression and ensure peace of spirit. In the 17th century Spain, there was a superstition that said, if a child wears a malachite talisman, it will help them sleep peacefully and protect their spirit from disturbances caused by evil spirits and dark energies.
In the Hermitage Museum (Petersburg, Russia), there is even a malachite room, which has gained prominence for storing a giant malachite vase. A similar space exists in Castillo de Chapultepec in Mexico City; and another malachite vase can be found in Linda Hall Library (Missouri, USA). This vase was a gift from Tsar Nicholas II, and it's called the Tazza.
Metaphysical Properties of Malachite
Malachite is most recommended for people born under the Zodiac signs of Taurus and Capricorn. Tauruses have a natural affinity for malachite, and Capricorns will find it useful in battling mood disorders. It's important to know, though, that nearly everyone who has a down-to-earth personality will benefit from carrying a malachite.
Like you may have guessed after analyzing its internal structure, malachite’s element is wood (in the Chinese elements model) or earth (in the Western elements model). Malachite contains the energy of nature. It symbolizes healthy nourishment and well-being in general. Use malachite as a decoration in your kitchen or dining room; or, alternatively, in the rooms where you want growth to occur, like your child’s bedroom or on your porch among your plants. An office is also a great space for malachite if you're trying to advance a business or new idea.
Malachite fosters not only health and abundance but also healthy family life. This is because malachite is the stone of anahata (the heart chakra). As you already know, green gems are all incredibly useful for this chakra.
Malachite is a great stone for focusing on money energy and wealth. It is also a stone of healing: my friend Ken always said that, if he had to choose ONE healing stone, it would be malachite, which is "one of the oldest healing stones on our planet. It was used in ancient Egypt as far back as 6000 BCE, and revered and is still used today." (The Karma Crystal Guide to Stones)