Brown Sugar Andes Llama Spiritual BEZOAR STONE C165




Inventory Number: C165
Country of Origin: Plurinational State of Bolivia.
Size (maximum by minimum): 1.44 cm. by 0.88 cm.
Color: As in photos.
Shape: A large, roughly flattened teardrop shape.
Physical Appearance: A marbled, granular (melted brown sugar-like) surface in shades of beige and brown with exposed sections of dark brown and white shiny core.


Lorenzo Fritz-Francisco

Investigaciones Culturales de Bolivia: Miscellaneous Cultural Notes XIX ,
La Paz, Bolivia

Bezoar stones are calculous, or mineral, concretions found in the digestive tracts of various artiodactyls. They have been utilized for millennia for their presumed magical qualities. These curious “gall” stones have also been called mustika pearls. Bezoar stones are relatively rare and have always been extremely valuable to tribes and cultures that revere them. In Europe, throughout most of the second millennium A.D., the “stones” were especially sought after by royalty, politicians and wealthy persons who believed that they could be used as antidotes against poison that their enemies might attempt to serve

“Modern examinations of the properties of bezoars by Gustaf Arrhenius and Andrew A. Benson of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography have shown that they could, when immersed in an arsenic-laced solution, remove the poison. The toxic compounds in arsenic are arsenate and arsenite. Each is acted upon differently, but effectively, by bezoar stones. Arsenate is removed by being exchanged for phosphate in the mineral brushite, a crystalline structure found in the stones. Arsenite is found to bond to sulfur compounds in the protein of degraded hair, which is a key component in bezoars.”

Indigenous tribes throughout the world and especially in the Americas have valued bezoar stones as talismans and amulets for various curative and magical qualities for thousands of years. J. J. Kent 2004, Bizarre Tales About Bezoar Stones reports:

“The Quichua name is illa, and Holquin in his Quichua dictionary says that the natives believed that bezoars were luck-bringing stones. Another name, quicu [probably “kiku,” Peruvian Aymara], is vouched for by Arriaga, who states that the Spaniards found some bezoars stained with the blood of sacrificial victims, thus showing that they were thought to possess a certain religious or mystic significance.”

Actually, the word illa is probably of Puquina origin (the “secret” language of the Incas that was probably the base language spoken at Tiwanaku until the 12th century A.D.). The term illa is used even today by Aymara, Kallawaya and Quechua llama herders to refer to amulets, fetishes and other objects of great power and energy. The majestic Andean mountains called Illimani and Illampu in Bolivia get their names from the word illa . Among Kallawaya, Southern Aymara and some Northern Aymara llama herders bezoar stones are called jayintilla (containing the suffix illa ). In the province of Pacajes, La Paz they are called jivillanta in Aymara. In the Department of Oruro, the stones are ground to powder and mixed with tea or water to be drunk by native children to give them strength, courage and power over malignant energies. Many Andean shamans consider them a mandatory ingredient for reviving elderly patients on the verge of dying.

Curiously, bezoar stones are known from only a few regions in the Bolivia...

... read more