Cut agate

Cut agate

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Credit: LAWRENCE LAWRY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Agate. Slice of the mineral agate, a form of quartz (silicon dioxide), consisting of banded chalcedony. The colours are produced by impurities in the mineral, which formed as successive layers of quartz precipitate out of solution. Agate is prized by collectors as a gem and also traditionally used to make a pestle and mortar.

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Keywords: agate, chalcedony, cut, gem, gemstone, geology, impure, mineral, natural, polished, quartz, sectioned, semi-precious stone, silica, silicon dioxide, sliced

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