Jadeite: Agate verdâtre, Feitsui, Jadeit, Jadeita, Natronjadeit, Yunnan Jade, Yu-stone, Sinkiang jade.

Nephrite: Aotea, Axe-stone, B.C. Jade, Beilstein, Grave Jade, Kidney Stone, Lapis Nephriticus, Nephrit, Nephrita, Nephrite (of Werner), New Zealand Greenstone, New Zealand Jade, Spinach Jade, Talcum Nephriticus, Tomb Jade.

Faux Jade

Many minerals are sold as jade. They include serpentine (also bowenite), carnelian, aventurine quartz, glass, grossularite, Vesuvianite, soapstone (and other steatites such as shoushan stone), and recently, Australian chrysoprase. "Korean jade," "Suzhou jade," "Styrian jade," "Canadian jade," "olive jade" and "new jade" are all really serpentine; "Transvaal jade" is grossularite.

In almost all dictionaries, the Chinese character 'yù' (玉) is translated into English as "jade." However, this frequently leads to misunderstanding: Chinese, Koreans, and Westerners alike generally fail to appreciate that the cultural concept of "jade" is considerably broader in China and Korea than in the West. A more accurate translation for this character on its own would be "precious/ornamental rock." It is seldom, if ever, used on its own to denote 'true' jade in Mandarin Chinese. For example, one would normally refer to ying yu (硬玉, “hard jade”) for jadeite, or ruan yu (軟玉, “soft jade”) for nephrite. The Chinese names for many ornamental non-jade rocks also incorporate the character 'yù,' and it is widely understood by native speakers that such stones are not, in fact, true precious nephrite or jadeite. Even so, for commercial reasons, the names of such stones may still be translated into English as "jade," and this practice continues to confuse the unwary.


Jade may be enhanced (or "stabilized") by three main methods, sometimes referred to as the ABC Treatment System:

  • Type A jadeite has not been treated in any way except surface waxing. This type of jadeite, carat by carat, is the most expensive gem in the world, even more so than diamond.
  • Type B treatment involves exposing a promising but stained piece of jadeite to chemical bleaches and/or acids and impregnating it with a clear polymer resin. This results in significant improvement of transparency and color of the material. Currently, infrared spectroscopy is the only technique to test for the presence of polymer in jadeite.
  • Type C jade has been artificially stained or dyed. The red color of red jade can be enhanced with heat. The effects are somewhat uncontrollable and may result in a dull brown. In any case, translucency is usually lost.

Type A treatment is the only form of enhancement acceptable to professional collectors.

See also


  1. ↑ Elizabeth Kennedy Easby, Pre-Columbian Jade from Costa Rica (New York: André Emmerich, 1968).
  2. ↑ Aggregates of actinolite also make up one form of asbestos.
  3. ↑ Mohs Gemstone Hardness Scale Orions Gemz and Jewelry. Retrieved August 8, 2007.


  • Bale, Martin T. and Min-jung Ko. 2006. “Craft Production and Social Change in Mumun Pottery Period Korea.” Asian Perspectives 45(2): 159-187.
  • Farndon, John. 2006. The Practical Encyclopedia of Rocks & Minerals: How to Find, Identify, Collect and Maintain the World's best Specimens, with over 1000 Photographs and Artworks. London: Lorenz Books. ISBN 0754815412
  • Klein, Cornelis, and Barbara Dutrow. 2007. Manual of Mineral Science. 23rd ed. New York: John Wiley. ISBN 0471721573
  • Laufer, Berthold. 1912. Jade: A Study in Chinese Archeology & Religion. Reprinted 1974. New York: Dover Publications.
  • Pellant, Chris. 2002. Rocks and Minerals. Smithsonian Handbooks. New York: Dorling Kindersley. ISBN 0789491060
  • Rawson, Jessica. 1975. Chinese Jade Throughout the Ages. London: Albert Saifer. ISBN 0875567541
  • Shaffer, Paul R., Herbert S. Zim, and Raymond Perlman. 2001. Rocks, Gems and Minerals, revised ed. New York: St. Martin's Press. ISBN 1582381321

External links

All links retrieved March 14, 2018.

  • Jade - International Colored Gemstone Association
  • Jade at
  • Jadeite sources in Mesoamerica (PDF) - Gemology World, Canadian Institute of Gemmology
  • Chinese Jade at, by Thomas Christensen