Bumblebee Jasper

mineralogy, history, and metaphysics

Welcome to the Bumblebee Jasper page. Here, you will learn everything you need to know, including mineralogy, history, metaphysics, and more!





Mount Papandayan, Indonesia


(Happiness, Honesty, Self-Esteem, Optimism)


Bumblebee Jasper is the tradename of a black and yellow variety of fibrous calcite that is found only at Mount Papandayan, Indonesia. The term jasper is a misnomer, as there are actually no variations of quartz found in this mineral. The banding and layering are caused by precipitated inclusions of Sulfur (yellow), Calcium & Aragonite (white), Orpiment & Realgar (arsenic orange minerals), and Pyrite (black). Through the years, this variety of calcite has gone by various names, including eclipse and fumarolic jasper.


Calcite is a common carbonate mineral, which forms many types of rock; including limestones, marble, travertines, and marls, as well as stalactites and stalagmites within caverns and cave systems. It crystalizes at low temperatures and in a wide variety of shapes and colors, often forming large, twinned scalenohedral crystals. Acute scalenohedral crystals are often referred to as "dogtooth spar", while the rhombohedral form is occasionally referred to as "nailhead spar". Calcite is best recognized by its effervescent reactivity with acids, such as vinegar. Additionally, if pressure is applied, or if it is dropped, it will naturally split along its cleavage points into smooth-surfaced, rhombohedral pieces. Calcite is often transparent to opaque and may infrequently show phosphorescence or fluorescence. Interestingly, a rhombohedral form of optically transparent calcite, sometimes called "Iceland spar", was often used by the Vikings, where it served as a navigational tool for tracking the sun on cloudy days. Calcite is found world-wide, with the most notable mining operations occurring at the Calcite Quarry in Michigan, USA. The Calcite Quarry is the largest carbonate mine in the world and has been in production for more than 100 years. The largest documented single crystal of calcite formed in Iceland, where it measured roughly 20 ft × 20 ft × 10 ft, and weighed nearly 250 tons, or 551,000 pounds!


Historically, the many uses of calcite have been well-documented; for instance, Ancient Egyptians carved many items out of calcite, often in depiction of their goddess Bast, whose name directly contributed to the term alabaster, due to its close association. Many other cultures have used calcite for carved objects and applications, with the most colorful variations garnering the most attention. Interestingly, a rhombohedral form of optically transparent calcite, sometimes called "Iceland spar", was often used by the Vikings, where it served as a navigational tool for tracking the sun on cloudy days. The Vikings realized that a very pure crystal of calcite can split a beam of sunlight into dual images, as the polarized light slightly deviates from the main beam. By observing the sky through the crystal, the rings of polarized light that surround the sun can be easily viewed, even under cloudy skies. Identifying the sun's location gave these early seafarers a reference point for navigating the oceans. More recently, during WW11, high-grade optical calcite was widely used as a polarizer in bomb sights and anti-aircraft weaponry, and it is still applied in many optical instruments in use today. Currently, the most common uses of microbiologically precipitated formations of calcite are for soil remediation, soil stabilization, and concrete repair.

In the animal world, calcite is often the primary component of the shells of marine organisms; such as plankton, brachiopods, echinoderms, and certain bivalves such as oysters. Fascinatingly, Trilobites, which became extinct during the end of the Permian period over 250 million years ago, had unique compound eyes that were composed of optical calcite crystals, which formed their lenses. Additionally, it makes up a substantial portion of all species of birds’ eggshell.


Jasper is an opaque and microcrystalline variety of silica that has the chemical formula SiO2, with additional trace elements and impurities being present in the structure. More specifically, it is a conglomerate of assorted variations of quartz and/or chalcedony. Typically, jasper forms in colors of red, orange, yellow, brown, and green, but it can be found in almost any color and combination. Most often, the colors of jasper are due to inclusions and weathering of Iron, or Fe; however, additional trace elements may have an impact on specific types or specimens. Jasper is renowned for its beautiful combinations of color, as well as its durability when being cut and polished as a tool, ornament, or gemstone.


Historically, the name ‘jasper’ can be linked all the way back to Ancient Arabic, Akkadian, Persian, Hebrew, Assyrian, and Latin, with the first known wide-spread uses of the word coming about during the rise of Mesopotamian Babylon, over 4,000 years ago. The name has been passed down through many languages, with the current and most common spelling, ‘jasper’, being derived from the Old French, ‘jaspre’. The name itself, which translates to “spotty or speckled stone”, is an allusion to its multi-colored appearance. Jasper is well-known to have been a favorite gem in the ancient world, where it was regularly crafted into tools, which were, in turn, used to create jewelry and other ornamental objects. As early as the 5th millennium BC, green jasper from present day Pakistan was thought to be commonly used in the making of bow drills; while later, during the Bronze Age, archaeological evidences recovered at the palace of Knossos, in Crete, suggests that jasper was also carved to produce wax seals. Throughout history, different types of jasper have also been used as amulets of protection and good fortune for soldiers going off to war.


Metaphysically, Bumblebee Jasper is said to aid the Root, Sacral, and Solar Plexus Chakra’s. It is considered a stone of comfort and conscious perception, allowing the user to become more aware of their spiritual self, while finding understanding in connection to present thoughts, feelings, and resulting actions. It is said that Bumblebee Jasper can help facilitate courage, confidence, and optimism, while encouraging its user to embrace necessary change. Physically, Bumblebee Jasper is said to aid the body in maintaining healthy gut bacteria and food processing. It is also said that the stone can aid the body with water retention and healthy kidney and liver function.

NOTE: Bumblebee Jasper contains trace amounts of realgar and orpiment, which are arsenic bearing minerals.

NEVER INGEST and be sure to wash your hands after use..