Quartz is a hard, crystalline mineral composed of silica (silicon dioxide).
There are many different varieties of quartz, several of which are classified gemstones. Since antiquity, varieties of quartz have been the most commonly used minerals in the making of jewelry and hardstone carvings, especially in Eurasia.
The word “quartz” is derived from the German word “Quarz”, which had the same form in the first half of the 14th century in Middle High German and in East Central German and which came from the Polish dialect term kwardy, which corresponds to the Czech term tvrdý (hard).
The Ancient Greeks referred to quartz as κρύσταλλος (krustallos) derived from the Ancient Greek κρύος (kruos) meaning “icy cold”, because some philosophers (including Theophrastus) apparently believed the mineral to be a form of supercooled ice. Today, the term rock crystal is sometimes used as an alternative name for transparent coarsely crystalline quartz.
Pure quartz, traditionally called rock crystal or clear quartz, is colorless and transparent or translucent, and has often been used for hardstone carvings, such as the Lothair Crystal. Common colored varieties include citrine, rose quartz, amethyst, smoky quartz, milky quartz, and others. These color differentiations arise from the presence of impurities which change the molecular orbitals, causing some electronic transitions to take place in the visible spectrum causing colors. Wikipedia