Long before Marilyn Monroe sang that Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend, ancient people were mining gems to use as, well, jewelry. Women’s love of jewelry is pre-historic! Remember, Wilma Flimstone wore pearls! Seems that was based on a bit of history…
The gemstones that were most notably used in ancient times were ones that were in ready abundance—sometimes even existing in large masses above ground or near bodies of water. Amber, lapis lazuli, turquoise, coral and -one of our Melissa Dew fave’s- malachite were enticing to Ancient people who saw their inherent beauty and found the gems were soft enough to work with ancient tools.
Sometimes even sand and water was used to polish or grind stones like lapis and turquoise into shapes or powders for art or cosmetics. Remember the blue eyelids in Ancient Egyptian art? Yup, that was turquoise. Remember the blue eye shadow of the 70’s and 80’s? The adage What’s old is new again sure rings true!
Next time you slip on your lapis bangle or look down at your malachite ring, remember… thousands of years ago a lady, not so different from you, was wearing the same gems you are today!