Shaligramas are unique to Nepal Kali Gandaki river. Similar to broken Shaligramas (many refer as sudarshana) other fossils do occur in other parts of the world. But they are not considered as shaligramas and worshiped. The other fossils have striking similarity to the ‘oneside’ broken part of shaligramas.

Shaligramas usually have a pair of chakras inside an opening but the other fossil varieties have a single chamber chakra formations. Besides shaligramas contain many other marks like conch, mace, bow etc. Shaligramas adhere to the characteristics mentioned in ancient puranas and hence both of them complement or validate each other of their authenticity. This website has many demonstrations of puranic quote and how exactly they match in the shaligramas.  Below I have included few fossils from non Gandaki and they are not worship worthy.

Specimen: Dactylioceras semicelatum
Location: Whitby, N,Yorks England

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Specimen: Dactylioceras commune Ammonite

Location: from the Torcian, Lower Jurassic at Whitby, Yorkshire


Specimen: Toxaceratiode sp. 

Location:  Walsh River, Queensland, Australia.


Specimen: Crucilobiceras densinodulum

Location:  Jurassic Coast beach of Charmouth, Dorset UK

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Specimen:  Dactylioceras athleticum

Location : Schlaifhausen, Forscheim, near Nuremburg, Germany.


Specimen:  dactylioceras

Location: alum shales of the upper Lias, lower Jurassic, whitby coast, Yorks England


Specimen: Cleoniceras Ammonite

Location: Mahajanga, Madagascar


Specimen: Acanthoceras sp

Location : from Agadir, Morocco



The ammonite fossils have a special super natural beliefs in many cultures around the world. Few such beliefs from around the world are mentioned here (courtesy :

Northern England

Much has been written about ammonites, commonly known as snakestones, in English folklore. The fascination with snakestones centred particularly around two places in England – Whitby in Yorkshire, and Keynsham in Somerset – where ammonites are common.

Snakestones were alluded to as early as the sixteenth century. William Camden in the book Britannia (1586) stated that, ‘if you break them you find within stony serpents, wreathed up in circles, but eternally without heads’.

Southern England

In Keynsham, it is believed that St. Keyna, a devout British virgin who lived in serpent-infested woods, turned the serpents into stone by praying (Walcott 1779). In some other parts of southern England snakestones were believed to have been fairies, changed first into snakes and then stones (Nelson 1968).

Evidence that ammonites were once used for medicinal purposes can be found in the writings of Richard Carew (1555-1620) who recounted in his Survey of Cornwall that, ‘… the Snakes, by their breathing about a hazell wand, doe make a stone ring of blew colour, in which there appeareth the yellow figure of a Snake; and that beasts which are stung, being given to drink of the water wherein this stone has been soaked, will therethrough recover’.

Ammonites were familiar to the early Greeks, who likened them to coiled goat horns, regarding them as sacred symbols because of their association with the horned god, Jupiter Ammon. They were known as Cornu Ammonis – horns of Ammon – from which the scientific name ‘ammonite’ was later derived.

The horns of Ammon became associated with Alexander the Great when, after his conquests, he took the title Son of Ammon. Coins that appeared near the end of his reign show horns with markings on them. However, even more apparent ammonite-like features are found on coins of one of Alexander’s generals, Lysimachus, to whom a kingdom was given.

Ammonites were used as protection against snakebites, as well as cures for blindness, barrenness and impotence (Bassett 1982). The notion that they would be an effective antidote for snakebites is an example of sympathetic medicine – where the cure resembles the cause of the illness.

Rudkin and Barnett (1979) relate how some Romans believed that they could predict the future if they slept with a golden (pyritised) ammonite under their pillow.

In Chinese folklore, ammonites were called Jiaoshih, or horn stones, after their resemblance to coiled rams’ horns.

They feature heavily in Chinese writings, including Su Sung’s Pen Tshao Thu Ching(Casanova 1983): ‘the stone-serpent appears in rocks which are found beside the rivers flowing into the southern seas. Its shape is like a coiled snake with no head or tail-tip. Inside it is empty. Its colour is reddish- purple. The best ones are those which coil to the left. It also looks like the spiral shell of a conch. We do not know what animal it was which was thus changed into stone’.

North America
Among the medicine men of the Plains and Navajo Nations, ammonites were called wanisugna – meaning ‘life within the seed, seed within the shell’ (Bassett 1982).

The Blackfoot called them insikim – buffalo stones – because of their resemblance to sleeping bison, and used them in spiritual ceremonies in order to corral bison herds (Kehoe 1965). They believed that buffalo stones could procreate, a mother stone hatching baby stones (Oakley 1978). One possible explanation for this belief is the tendency for ammonites to fragment along the septa that separate the chambers of the shell.

According to Grinnel (quoted in Kehoe 1965), buffalo stones are ‘found on the prairie, and the person who succeeds in obtaining one is regarded as very fortunate. Sometimes a man, who is riding along on the prairie, will hear a peculiar faint chirp, such as a little bird might utter. The sound he knows is made by a buffalo rock… If it is found, there is great rejoicing.’

In some parts of the Western Isles, ammonites are known as crampstones and were once used medicinally. As Martin in his Description of the Western Island of Scotland (1703) remarked: ‘These stones are by the Natives called Crampstones because as they say they cure the Cramp in Cows, by washing the part affected with water in which this stone has been steep’d for some Hours’.

Ammonites were also used for medicinal purposes in Germany, again to treat farm animals. Farmers from the Harz Mountains used ‘a fossile shaped like a Ram’s Horn call’d Drake (Dragon) – stone…for when the Cows lose their milk, or void Blood in stead of it, they put these Stones into a Milk-pail, and by that means expect a due quantity of Milk from these Cows again’ (Georg Henning Behrens 1703 quoted in Nelson 1968).

In south-eastern Spain, depictions of ammonites have been found in Mesolithic rock art.

New Guinea
Oakley (1978) related that during a 1964 British Museum expedition to the Upper Sepik river, New Guinea, Bryan Cranstone found that members of the Tifalmin tribe using ammonites as charms to help with hunting and gardening.