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substance...

roots of the ginzuishou.

Ginzuishou, literally meaning "silver crystal", is obviously composed of crystal, although the term "crystal" can mean different things symbolically. Crystal's transparency represents a union of opposites:

...although crystal is composed of matter, it allows the eye to see through it as though it were immaterial.

The Penguin Dictionary of Symbols

Crystal is the intermediate between the visible and invisible, a symbol of wisdom and divination, and hidden powers given to mankind. A hidden power, indeed, is given to Serenity early on, and it serves as the base power of her henshin compact in each season. The word "crystal", however, has varying connotations across cultures. The word may mean the substance (usually rock crystal, or rock quartz) or the faceted natural shape thereof, and thus can be regarded in varying ways. Indian mineralogy views crystal as an immature substance, with diamond representing ultimate maturity.

In terms of the word's use here, Takeuchi-sensei may have been thinking of the shape, or the substance in general: that of a clear, faceted stone. When seen in the series, the stone takes two main shapes or forms: a sphere (slightly teardrop-shaped in the manga) and a lotus-like flowered shape. Both forms are perfectly faceted, more like a gemstone than a natural crystal shape. Because of this, I feel that she may have meant a prismatic crystal (such as Austrian crystal or leaded glass) rather than a natural one.

At any rate, the ginzuishou is a crystal in the same sense that a faceted rainbow-making prism is a crystal, and in a way I think perhaps such a thing is what inspired Takeuchi-sensei in the first place. On a practical level, if she was thinking of real crystals, minerals found in nature, the natural facets and irregularities would be hard to draw consistantly and carefully throughout the series. Cut facets are much more uniform, and a faceted sphere/teardrop would be easier to represent, than say, a double-terminated quartz crystal.

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