Native American Turquoise Jewelry

Published on January 13, 2012 by Amy

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Native American Turquoise Jewelry
Native American Turquoise Jewelry

Native American turquoise jewelry is a trendy way to add flair to your outfit. However, these colorful pieces also carry a much deeper meaning. Native American turquoise jewelry is symbolic of nature, more specifically the blue sky, which Native Americans associate with spirituality.

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Turquoise is a precious gem and usually has a green or blue color. The exact color of the turquoise piece is determined by the amount of copper in it. Generally the more copper in a piece the more blue it will appear. Also, turquoise has been discovered in white and dark blue colors as well. Turquoise is found most commonly in the southwest region of the United States and is the stone that can be seen most frequently in Native American jewelry.

Turquoise is a meaningful mineral to the Native Americans. It can be used as a symbol of wealth or status in certain tribes. In fact native Americans often bury loved ones with their turquoise jewelry to be taken with them to the afterlife.

In addition, many Indian tribes associate Native American turquoise jewelry with fertility. For example, the Tewa tribe refers to the stone as The Turquoise Woman or The Turquoise Mother. However, in other tribes such as the Zuni tribe turquoise is given male characteristics and is often called The Turquoise Boy.

Native American turquoise jewelry can also be seen as a gift from one individual to another. However, more commonly in Indian tribes turquoise is considered a gift from the spirits to man. In addition, many tribes, including the Zuni, Hopi, Tewa, and Kresan associate turquoise jewelry with the northern direction. Conversely, other tribes, such as the Tiwa, Picunis, and Sandia, associate turquoise with the southern direction. Despite this inconsistency, most tribes will agree that Native American turquoise jewelry has the power to make just about anything more desirable.

Source: native-net Unabridged
Based on the collective work of, © 2015 Native American Encyclopedia.
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