Jasper has a dull luster but takes a fine polish, and its hardness and other physical properties are those of quartz. Jasper is often sealed with petroleum products. Its polish might wash away in water, so clean with a soft, dry cloth.
The gem was a favorite in the ancient world, and the name jasper can be traced back in Hebrew, Assyrian, Persian, Greek and Latin. In the fourth century, it was called the great "rain-bringer," and it has been thought to strengthen the stomach and cure gynecological troubles. Some also use it to drive away evil spirits and protect against snake and spider bites. It supposedly gives you the courage to speak out and the bravery to achieve personal independence. Landscape jaspers are amongst the most popular varieties. Jasper is mined in North Africa, Sicily, France, India, Venezuela, Germany, the U.S.A. and elsewhere. See Also: