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Onyx, a chalcedony quartz is mainly found in California, India, Brazil, and
Uruguay. Black onyx shines especially well when used as a backdrop for
color play. Its fine texture also makes it ideal for carving. Onyx that has a
black or brownish background with white bands is called sardonyx.
Onyx was very popular with the ancient Greeks and Romans. The name
comes from the Greek word 'onyx', which means nail or claw. The story is
that one day the frisky Cupid cut the divine fingernails of Venus with an
arrowhead while she was sleeping. He left the clippings scattered on the
sand and the fates turned them into stone so that no part of the heavenly
body would ever perish. In Greek times, almost all the colors of
chalcedony from fingernail white to dark brown and black were called onyx.
Later, the Romans narrowed the term to refer to black and dark brown
As a healing stone, onyx is used to strengthen and cure diseases of the
heart and kidneys, to reduce stress and neurological disorders, remove
apathy, to improve eyesight and to ensure a good night's sleep.
Onyx powers include eliminating negative thoughts, sharpening the wits and
promoting spiritual inspiration.