Malachite (copper carbonate) occurs as a product of copper oxidation, and is a common indicator for copper prospectors since it indicates the presence of copper ore. Its formation is usually boytrodal, resembling a group of various sized bubbles. In its natural form, these types of malachite contain bands of green shades and are frequently cut and polished to reveal the visually appealing intersecting-circular bands. Malachite is more rarely found in formations of small hairlike fibers, why display a velvety sheen. Stalagmite clusters also occur less often that botryoidal and very rarely as single pyramidal crystals. You don't have to look far to find naturally occurring malachite, as it is what's responsible for the green tarnish on bronze and copper. Malachite for the gem industry is often reconstituted (made from smaller pieces or powder), and pressed to form a banded appearance, but this process is unlikely to duplicate the peculiar interacting round forms in non-reconstituted malachite. Malachite is polymorphic and often turns into it's cousin, azurite so they are often found together. A mineral known as "false malchite" or pseudomalachite, looks very similar. It is the phosphate rather than carbonate of copper, and is rarer than true malachite.

Much is said concerning the spiritual & healing properties of malachite. Among the qualities attributed to malachite are protection from harm, boosting of the immune system, revealing one's true feelings when worn, helping one to attain emotional balance, and for opening and cleansing of the heart chakra.

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