Agate has one of the oldest historical traditions of any healing stone. It is included in virtually every known lapidary, texts which describe gemstones and their powers. Archaeological evidence amply shows that Agates have been treasured since the very earliest times. Agates have been found in many Stone Age graves and appear to have been kept either for their beauty or, perhaps, for their energetic power. Early lapidaries, dating as far back as 3000 BCE, referenced seals, rings, beads, and other ornaments which were carved out of Agate. The Sumerians were the first to describe the power of stones, and their texts state that wearing Agate gave a person special favor with the gods.
The name “Agate” was first used by the Greek writer Theophrastus (372-287 BCE). He wrote that all Agates came from a Sicilian river then called the Achates River, and today known as the Dirillo River. Agates are still found along this river today. In the 1st century, Pliny the Elder (23-79 CE) repeated Theophrastus’ claim and further stated that looking at Agate rested the eyes and that sucking on a piece of Agate could quench thirst. As a result of these beliefs, Agate was still being prescribed by druggists for treating eye conditions as recently as the early 20th century.
Dendritic Agate, Moss Agate and Tree Agate are all variations of the same stone. Moss Agate and Tree Agate have green dendrites, while Dendritic Agate typically has black or brown hues, although other colors are also possible. The word “dendritic” is a scientific term meaning “to branch like trees.” Tree Agate has vivid green patterns on a pure white opaque stone.
Tree Agate doesn’t have any historical stories or symbols associated with it, but trees have long served as symbols of growth, longevity, wisdom and prosperity. Scared grooves and trees have special religious importance within many cultures, historical and modern. Just like crystals, each type of tree has its own meaning and magic. In the Celtic world, seven trees, Alder, Apple, Ash, Elder, Hazel, Oak and Yew. were considered sacred. They were revered for their own spiritual or medicinal power or because they were the homes of powerful nature spirits. Today, modern witches often choose a wand based on the type of wood. Apple wood is fantastic for a wand used for healing and love spells, while Maple wood ensures that there is always sweetness as well as strength in the magic.