Jade And Other Stones
Stones from comparatively hard jade to the aptly named soap-stone have always presented a challenge to the craftsman. Whenever they were to be found in suitable size and shape it was an invitation to the lapidary to attempt to fashion them into works of art. The comparison between a rough natural stone and the result of careful carving and polishing never ceases to surprise and delight the onlooker. The finest specimens barely indicate the skill and patience that contributed to their finished form, but a brief study will show why the Chinese and others revered jade and why Europeans attempted to rival rock-crystal with glass.