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Cinnabar Yin-Yang

Updated on March 9, 2013
Cinnabar the Mineral
Cinnabar the Mineral
Mercury Thermometer derived from Cinnabar
Mercury Thermometer derived from Cinnabar

Cinnabar Lacquer Jewelry

The Mineral

The mineral Cinnabar also known as Cinnabrite is Mercury Sulfate HgS chemically, and a burnt Sienna in color, or reddish brown. Ground down, Cinnabar red mineral pigment to make and mixed with lacquer and covered carved woods or carving directly when lacquer layers are dry in the ancient Chinese tradition to make jewelry, furniture, vases and jewelry-boxes. Cinnabar is a gorgeous deep, rich, hot and sexy, scarlet red. MERCURY SULFATE HgS is a toxic by-product of Cinnabar the mineral. In ancient times and even as recent as the mid 20th century that Mercury by-product was not known of its toxicity so it was readily used and such caused Mercury poisoning. But not anymore! Today the Mercury is taken out before the jewelry, carvings and the red lacquer is made for domestic and personal uses. Mercury exposure or poisoning can cause these symptoms typically and include sensory impairment (vision, hearing, speech), disturbed sensations and a lack of coordination. Another past source of mercury poisoning was in women’s makeup, particularly, white powder, rouge and lipsticks.

Mercury Mythology, Astrology & Astronomy

In astronomy, the planet Mercury named after the Roman god in astrology too, symbolizes a quicksilver, silver-tongued, and the winged heeled, fleet footed Roman messenger god of the gods. An ultra communicative person, a quick-witted person and one with “ruler of all communication’s” attributes. In mythology, as in the chemical element Mercury, both treat their respective Mercury’s with a speedster or “hard to catch!” The characteristics in some respect are similar metaphorically. The mercury metallic, the “hard-to-hold-on-to”, slip through your fingers liquid metal-like material, although silverish in color here, is the by-product of the reddish cinnabar mineral, is similar to the “now you see him- now you don’t Mercury messenger god.

Cinnabar Fragrance Gift Set
Cinnabar Fragrance Gift Set

Cinnabar Perfume by Estee Lauder

The Estee Lauder perfume company has manufactured and marketed a woman’s fragrance called, “Cinnabar.” THERE IS NO MERCURY OR TOXICITY IN “CINNABAR” THE FRAGRANCE BY ESTEE LAUDER. This “Cinnabar” (the fragrance) is purely marketing. Cinnabar the perfume, again, was created by the design house of Estee Lauder and introduced in 1978. Cinnabar is a feminine scent that resembles a cinnamon essence and possesses a blend of aldehydic, floral, oriental, spicy, cinnamony, exotic, balsamic and sensual. Cinnabar the fragrance is recommended for eveningwear. Ironically, the fragrance name conotates the mineral of the same name and the toxic mineral, Mercury. As the perfume name, it’s usage, Cinnabar, as a fragrance name suggests “Spice”, Cinnamony, Exoticism, Sex, the Orient, Chinese, Dragons, Mystery, Dangerous Liaisons, etc., and all things Hot Scarlet Red. Especially red lips and red lipstick! This is excellent marketing! Taking two opposite meanings to the same word and using them successfully in a perfect perfume scent and in perfect word sense! When I hear the fragrance name, I immediately think of the fragrance not the mineral or the lacquer. Firstly I think of my fiancée’s lusciously sexy “SIN-amon” scent of spice cinnamon! It drives me crazy, Yum, Yum! Cinnamon candy and cinnamon gum and cinnamon baked goods, cookies, cakes, apple pie and pastries blow my mind, OMG! The mineral/lacquer/mercury poising doesn’t register!

Cinnabar the Perfume

Cinnamon Spice

Cinnamon the spice although not related to Cinnabar the mineral but sounds like and scent is in Cinnabar perfume has been determined by research and suggests that cinnamon can reduce blood sugar. Cholesterol, and triglyceride levels in people with type 2 diabetes have been lowered also. A study in the “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition” found that adding a little more than a teaspoon of cinnamon to rice pudding even help tame blood sugar in people without diabetes.

Cinnamon contains polyphenols, which acts as antioxidants that protect cells against free radical damage, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and ward against cancer. The scent of cinnamon also helps with alertness.

Cinnabar Lacquer Earrings
Cinnabar Lacquer Earrings
Cinnabar Lacquer Necklace
Cinnabar Lacquer Necklace
Cinnabar Lacquer Vase
Cinnabar Lacquer Vase
Cinnabar Lacquer Jewelry Beads
Cinnabar Lacquer Jewelry Beads
Cinnabar Lacquer Jewelry Beads
Cinnabar Lacquer Jewelry Beads

Cinnabar Jewelry & Fine Objects

So the alert Chinese and their beautiful Cinnabar mineral lacquer painted carved jewelry, of earrings to necklace beads to bracelets in bright scarlet red and intricately detailed, were an ancient touch of the exotic orient. Although now, these current, "modern" cinnabar lacquer beads and such now days have the mercury removed. Meaning these jewels and artifacts are made with modern cinnabar resins and cinnabar lacquers. Traditionally, cinnabar was built-up lacquers, coats upon coats upon coats and so forth, and allowed to dry then hardened and carved. The traditional formulas contained high quantities of mercury and again, are considered toxic and poisonous by today's standards. Today these beads are made from non-toxic, modern formulas.

The duel opposite meanings of the word Cinnabar, perfume/toxic mineral lacquer, like the planet Mercury’s astrological ruling zodiac sign Gemini, is also the Gemini Twins. So it’s safe to say that Cinnabar is a Gemini word and a Gemini object and is Gemini Cinnabar. The concept of yin and yang in Chinese philosophy describes two opposing and, at the same time, complementary and completing aspects. So thanks to the fragrance company, Cinnabar’s Yin-Yang was born and filled the air with cinnamon flowers!

Cinnabar Lacquer Jewelry Box
Cinnabar Lacquer Jewelry Box

“Xie Xie Nin” -Chinese pronunciation for Thank You!


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