Richard W. Hughes, editor | 2022
The study of jade is unlike any other gem, trespassing across all conventional boundaries, particularly those of the gemological and mineralogical realm. Despite the march of mineralogical orthodoxy and conformity, the word “jade” is a fist in the air of protest, crying out not for reduction and definition, but an expansion of the mineralogical lexicon to include the cultural aspects of human civilization and life. The word “jade” is the anti-mineral. Because jade is so much more than a simple census of atoms, their valence states, and their places of residence.
An understanding of jade is not limited to the technical or exacting; it also incorporates a feeling for the cultural, textural, and ephemeral qualities that make the study of this gem unlike any other in the world of gemstones. It is our heartfelt hope that this volume will not just fill the “traditional gemological” gap, but will open readers’ eyes to a world beyond. Because jade is so much more.
While the literature on jade is vast, perhaps greater than any other gem, there is a distinct lack of a volume that treats jade as a gemological material. This book is designed to fill that gap, with extensive information on the history, sources, appraisal and identification of both treated and the various forms of imitation jade. All of this is together in a single volume for the first time, making this a must-have for all collectors, dealers, gemologists, appraisers, curators and anyone else with an interest in this fascinating gem.