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Etymology and history

The name hematite is derived from the Greek word for blood αἷμα aima because hematite can be red, as in rouge, a powdered form of hematite. The color of hematite lends it well in use as a pigment. The English name of the stone is derived from Middle French: Hématite Pierre, which was imported from Latin: Lapis Hæmatites, which originated from Ancient Greek: αἱματίτης λίθος (haimatitēs lithos, “blood-red stone”).

Hematite description

Hematite is a mineral, colored black to steel or silver-gray, brown to reddish brown, or red. It is mined as the main ore of iron. Varieties include kidney ore, martite (pseudo morphs after magnetite), iron rose and specularite (specular hematite). While the forms of hematite vary, they all have a rust-red streak. Hematite is harder than pure iron, but much more brittle. Maghemite is a hematite- and magnetite-related oxide mineral. Huge deposits of hematite are found in banded iron formations. Grey hematite is typically found in places where there has been standing water or mineral hot springs, such as those in Yellowstone National Park in the United States. The mineral can precipitate out of water and collect in layers at the bottom of a lake, spring, or other standing water. Hematite can also occur without water, however, usually as the result of volcanic activity.

Hematite in jewelry

In addition to being used as a source of pigments and pure iron, hematite is also used in jewelry. The silvery gray form of hematite is most popular for this purpose, as it can be polished to a pure sheen. Pure hematite is often used to make simple rings and bracelets, and the stone is also turned into beads or set into other pieces of jewelry. Some stone carvers also work with hematite to produce ornamental carved pieces. Hematite's popularity in jewelry was at its highest in Europe during the Victorian era, and has since seen a strong resurgence in North America, especially in the western United States. It is also used in art such as intaglio engraved gems.


Hematite is an iron ore found in England, Mexico, Brazil, Australia, Poland, Hungary and in the Lake Superior region of the United States.

Hematite in our jewelry

Hematite Jewelry

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