What is amber?

Posted by Ann H Mar at

At Mar Silver Jewelry, we have a wide selection of sterling silver jewelry with amber. Learn more about this beautiful material here.

Amber is fossilized tree resin, not a mineral or gemstone.

Amber bracelet and pendant are displayed next to a small sculpture of a tree formed by wire and small pieces of amber for leaves.

The beautiful brown, yellow and green ‘gems’ began as tree sap, excreted millions of years ago. Over time, the resin hardened, and was washed from the ancient forests into rivers and then to the sea. The brown, milky, green and yellow colors are the result of different conditions under which the sap hardened. 

Since ancient times, people have collected amber on the beaches of the Baltic Sea after storms. Tradition has it that amber has healing properties; amber amulets were used in Europe in antiquity to protect babies and children. Homer's Odyssey mentions elektron, the Greek word for amber.

Mar Silver Jewelry’s Baltic Amber Jewelry  collection features amber from the Baltic Sea set in sterling silver in Gdansk, Poland, a well-known center for amber jewelry production.

Fragments of amber on the beach. Laima Gūtmane (simka…, CC BY-SA 3.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons

Read more about amber at the GIA website and check out this interesting article from the Getty Museum about amber in the ancient world.

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