Friday, 13 May 2011

ToMAYto, ToMAHto: Stone Identification Help?

So I've had these beads for a few years now, and I liked them so much that I bought about 15 of them.  They're all top drilled marquise shaped with an interesting pattern in them.  Here's a couple of photos of three of them:

When I purchased them I asked the shop owner what they were, and I could have sworn that she said they she thought they were called "sage amethyst".  Having never seen anything like them, I looked up "sage amethyst" to see if I could find out for sure so I could put it in my listing when I made pieces with them.  Except that when I looked up "sage amethyst", I found this:

"Sage Amethyst" from

And also this:

"Sage Amethyst" from, beadsvision's shop


Obviously, neither of these photos look anything like my beads, nor did any of the other images for "sage amethyst" on Google.  Given this, I assumed that the bead shop lady was incorrect, and that there must be another name for my beads.  Only I had no way of figuring out what it was--Google, unfortunately, does not have a reverse image search (alas).  So I put them aside, hoping that one day I would find out what stone they were made from.

Today I was doing my usual Etsy browsing and I came across this listing for this cabochon:

Amethyst Sage Dendrite Agate Shield Cabochon, from

Of course, this looks very much like my beads.  So I did another search, this time for "amethyst sage" instead of "sage amethyst".  Just exchanging the two words made a huge difference in my search results, because from this combination I came up with this:

"Amethyst Sage" from Silverhawk's Gemstones

 and also this:

"Amethyst Sage" from

And now I couldn't be more confused. there a stone called "sage amethyst" and a different stone called "amethyst sage"?  or is "amethyst sage" a different name for "sage amethyst agate"?  Is one a type of amethyst (quartz) and another an agate?  What kind of stone are my beads? and why on earth would they give nearly identical names to two very different stones?

Anyone who knows the answer will receive a lifetime subscription to my blog! :)

Happy Friday 13th, y'all. 


1 comment:

  1. Hi Jenny, The pictures of your cabs looks like Merlinite to me (also seen sold as dendritic opal). Merlinite is the marketing name for a white chalcedony containing dendrites (source Mindat). Sage Amethyst is amethyst which shows banding (like the pictures of the beads). This is Amethyst but because of the banding is given the trade name Sage Amethyst. Can't say what Amethyst Sage is - looks like a dendritic agate? Terry