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Javanite “Fire Pearls”

Part of the Australasian tektite event, Javanites are characterized by deep intricate etching and a brilliant gloss. Known as “Agni Mani” in Sanskrit (roughly translated as “Fire Pearls”), the fabled Javan tektites have a rich cultural lore collected in an entertaining book by Latvian Baron Richard J.H. de Touche-Skadding. (Agni Mani: Magic Gem from the Moon: Ballantine, 1966; Mayflower 1968). While the book purports to be a non-fiction account of his 30-year search for the stones, it seems as highly embellished as the skin of a Javanite. None-the-less, Touche-Skadding was a believer and presented specimens to then-Princess Elizabeth, Winston Churchill, and Lord Louis Mountbatten in the 1940s with the hope of blessing them with the legendary good luck of the Agni Mani. (specimens from the author’s collection).

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