Lapidary Tools

Lapidary Tools

The word “Lapidary” derives from the Latin "Lapis" which means Stone. In nature, rocks are encountered (as Mineral) divided into many different types of minerals, each with their own distinctive characteristics.

People engaged in the collection and processing of minerals, are named “Lapidarists”. Lapidarists and Glass Hobbyists (Glass workers), have a few things in common. Both work (often) with very hard material. For the processing of minerals (rocks) and glass, both use tools like grinding- and polishing machines and sawing machines with the belonging auxiliary tools such as grinding wheels, polishing Disks, Belts and glass saws.

For the Lapidarist the hardness of the mineral is an important factor. It is a tool to identify the corresponding stone or mineral, as being Agate, Pebble, Calcite, Topaz etc.
For the glass worker, the hardness of the glass may sometimes also be very important to know. But how is it measured?

Friedrich Mohs, an Austrian Mineralogist, born on January 29, 1773 and died on December 29, 1839 (source Wikipedia) found a relatively simple answer. He designed a Hardness Scale, based on the least hard naturally occurring mineral Talc, which he ascribed a value of 1. Talc, can be scratched by any other mineral. To Diamond, the hardest naturally occurring mineral, he ascribed a value of 10. Only Diamond can be scratched, by Diamond.

In this Main group "Lapidary Tools" you can find several tools that are used by Glass craftsmen as well as by the Lapidarists. The Mohs hardness Test set, introduced above, is just an example of were the worlds of stone and glass meet each other.