Sunday, August 14, 2011

Mermaids' Tears on a Rainy Sunday

Sea glass is romantically called mermaids' tears due to old legend or folklore which would have it that mermaids, forbidden to change the course of nature by Nepture, the God of Sea, nevertheless defied this by trying to save sailors in peril at sea and were consequently banished to live in the depths of the oceans, banned from surfacing or swimming near fishermen or sailors again. In their distress the mermaids would cry tears that turned into crystalline drops, reminders of their shattered sentiments and their inability to rescue those lost at sea. Other lore stated that mermaids could only come on shore in the light of the full moon, and as dawn broke they shed tears as they were obliged to return to the seas were transformed into rainbow coloured glass...

 Today was one of those days I think the mermaids may have been crying!

I was not able to get out on the beach today so I decided to arrange my "tears". This is a small sampling of the range of colors, shapes and sizes that I have collected over the years. Every seaglass lover or want to be collector should own the book Pure Sea Glass by Richard LaMotte. (See my page entitled Books about Seaglass and More on the right sidebar)

Now, for the interesting part. Not only do my "tears" come in beautiful colors, some of them actually glow!  If you have a good eye for color, you may just realize that some hold a secret that few know about. But since I don't like to keep secrets, I will show you! Circled below are two pieces, can you see the subtle color difference from any others?

Now, for the most amazing part.

This is what is called "Vaseline Glass". Originally called Uranium Glass because it contained trace amounts of Uranium, it was produced pre-1930 and when viewed under a black light in a dark room it glows a bold, flourescent lime green. These "mermaid tears" are of course some of my most special.

Thank you to a fellow blogger, for the lovely story of how seaglass became known as "mermaid's tears". 

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