Carnelian

A beautiful reddy orange semi-precious stone comprised of Chalcedony / Quartz and coloured by inclusions and impurities of Iron Oxide.

As with most stones, Carnelian looks better when it has been polished and is often sold as such – but we do sell some rough pieces too. The strength of colour really depends on the locale – we sell pieces from all around the world.

Carnelian can even be found by beachcombing on beaches around the UK.

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Information about Carnelian

It is a semi-precious, iron-rich stone consisting of a dull red or reddish-white variety of Quartz / Chalcedony. It has a glassy translucent tone reminiscent of autumn leaves or sunsets. It is possible its name is derived from the Latin word for flesh, ‘caro’ or ‘carnis’, but it may also come from the word ‘cornum’, the Latin name for a type of cherry.

Pieces of this stone have been found at ancient sites dating from 4000 – 5000 BC, as well as decorative pieces dated at 1800 BC. It was widely used for wax seals by the Romans, as apparently hot wax does not stick to the stone.