Physical Properties of Smoky Quartz
Smoky quartz is a silicon dioxide - just like all other varieties of quartz (clear quartz, rose quartz, amethyst, citrine). Smoky quartz comes in all kinds of shades of brown, grey, and black. The dark, smoky color of this variety of quartz occurs due to traces of aluminum within the crystal, as well as natural irradiation, that occurs deep within the earth. Smoky quartz can be either fairly clear or opaque - just like clear quartz - depending on the circumstances during its growth. It's a durable mineral, with a hardness of 7 on the Mohs scale.
History of Kunzite
Actually, not much is known about smoky quartz's history. What we know for sure is that it certainly wasn't as popular in the past as it is now. There is some evidence suggesting that the Ancient Romans used smoky quartz for their intaglio seals, just like Sumerians, who used it to craft cylinders and ring seals. It’s possible that the Sumerians wrote on smoky quartz, too, then used it as a stamp for their clay forms.
Although the Egyptian culture used primarily turquoise in their most-recognized artifacts, archeologists found scarabs, beads, and jewelry items made from quartz. Ancient Greeks used quartz, too: they created carved objects from it and used them during lawsuits. Some depicted local warriors, as well. Pliny the Elder, a Roman Author, wrote about smoky quartz in his texts; and from these, we know he used to call it mormorion. This name was later misread, and morion became the stone's official name in Germany, Danemark, Poland, and Spain (even now, we call very dark smoky quartz "morion," adapted from this word, which means "a kind of dark, precious stone").
Smoky quartz has an interesting past in Scotland, too. It was extracted mostly in the Cairngorm Mountains and used to craft jewelry, kilt pins, and handles of single-edged knives. The biggest smoky quartz specimen obtained there weighs over 20 kg and is currently stored in the Braemar Castle in Aberdeenshire. Additionally, the Druids considered smoky quartz a sacred mineral.
Last, but not least: in the 12th century China, smoky quartz was used to craft sunglasses. In 17th century China, it was used for snuff bottles that contained tobacco. The most prominent mines were located in Fujian province.
Metaphysical Properties of Smoky Quartz
Smoky quartz is believed to contain earth energy: it's an excellent stone for transmuting lower-frequency energy through the earth, to recycle it into white light. It’s also the stone of Muladhara, the root chakra, which makes it ideal for grounding. If you've just moved to a new area and feel permanently homesick, having smoky quartz around may help.
Placing smoky quartz near your bed or under your pillow may help to sharpen your psychic abilities, as it is said to be a stone that can support intuition and stimulate the senses. While we're all aware of the fact that dreams are born from our subconsciousness, but often we tend to be unsure of how to actually decipher them. Smoky quartz may also help with dream interpretation and improve the overall quality of your sleep.
Smoky quartz is recommended for winter Zodiac signs, especially Sagittarius and Capricorn.