Hematite is one of the oldest known iron oxide crystals in the world. It most commonly occurs as a black or steel grey gem, but does occasionally occur in red. It’s thanks to this occasional red colouring that hematite gets its name. Hematite comes from the Greek haima, meaning blood.
Despite it’s slightly gory name, hematite actually played a very important role in human history. Red hematite was used as chalk to create some of the very earliest human writing, some 164,000 years ago. We’d say that this gives today’s hematite jewellery a very intellectual lineage!
Hematite fans may also be interested to know that historically the gem has been considered to be a very calming and grounding stone. Because of this, wearing hematite jewellery is believed by some to aid focus and concentration.
Worn best with…
Most hematite jewellery is made from black varieties of the gem. It looks similar to jet or onyx, but as it is a crystal it has a slightly more lustrous feel to it.
We think it looks glorious with precious metals such as gold or silver, as these help to bring out the metallic shimmer in the hematite.
Hematite was very popular in Ancient Rome. It was used to decorate not just jewellery and curios, but also weapons and armour. This is in part due to the dark hue of the gem, as this was believed to be both intimidating to opponents and protective for the wearer.
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