Eilat Stone are rare, blue and green gemstones exclusively from mines near Israel’s southernmost city of Eilat. Each gem has its own beautiful patterns, making every Eilat Stone unique and individual. No longer mined, Eilat Stone is incredibly scarce.
Eilat Stone (also ‘Ellat’ or ‘Elat’) derives its name from the Israeli city of Eilat where it was once mined. Also known as ‘The King Solomon Stone’, Eilat Stone is the national gemstone of Israel.
An attractive, blue and green opaque gemstone, Eilat Stone displays a variety of colorful designs due to the oxidization of copper, iron and manganese. Each gem has its own beautiful patterns, making every Eilat Stone unique and individual. Often confused with Turquoise because of its color, Eilat Stone’s major value determinants are color (bright colorful designs) and lapidary quality (polish condition).
Eilat Stone is cut as cabochons (cut in convex form and highly polished, but not faceted) to accentuate the signature color patterns that make each gemstone visually unique. Finished with an excellent finish, proportion and shape, Eilat Stone displays bright colors and a superior luster.
Eilat Stone is a green-blue inhomogeneous mixture of several secondary copper minerals including Azurite, Chrysocolla, Malachite, and Turquoise. Eilat Stone has been used as a gemstone since classical times and jewelry excavated from ancient Egyptian and Israelite tombs features this gemstone. Visitors to Israel should be aware that due to the extreme rarity of this gemstone, most ‘Eilat Stone’ sold in tourist shops is imported from foreign mines and are not genuine.
Eilat Stone is exclusively from copper mines in the Timna Valley located 24 kilometers north of Israel’s southernmost city of Eilat, near the Gulf of Aqaba in the Red Sea. Its mines are believed to have been the copper mines of King Solomon, hence its colloquial name.
Copper mining occurred in the Timna Valley as early as 1800 BC and the area was later conquered by the Egyptians making Timna a very important source of copper. There are many ancient copper mines in the valley, some look like holes in the ground, while others are caves hewn with stone. Timna was also the first known location for copper smelting by the Egyptians and in some places, there are remains of copper-smelting ovens.
Due to the deposit’s unique geological formation, Eilat Stone is only found in this particular area and should not be confused with similar looking gemstones from other countries. When copper mining at Timna became unprofitable in the 70s and 80s, the mining of Eilat Stone ceased, and the deposit is also believed to be ostensibly depleted.
Having the distinction of being found only in Israel, being the country’s national gemstone, and no longer mined, Eilat Stone has become increasingly valuable, with existing, dwindling supplies exceedingly scarce and difficult to source.
Receiving no enhancements or treatments, Eilat Stone is also one of the few gemstones that are entirely natural.
Durability & Care
A durable jewelry gemstone, Eilat Stone (Mohs’ Hardness: 5 – 6) should always be stored carefully to avoid scuffs and scratches. Clean with gentle soap and lukewarm water, scrubbing behind the gem with a very soft toothbrush as necessary. After cleaning, pat dry with a soft towel or chamois cloth.