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Red amber

29 March 2020

Amber – the fossil resin of coniferous trees appeared at least 40 million years ago. To this day, it hasn’t been possible to determine explicitly which plant gave rise to the fossil.

In ancient times, Pliny the Elder believed it could have been one of the variations of pine. At the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, this theory had many supporters and was confirmed also by the presence of the remains of pines found in nuggets in the form of inclusions.

Unfortunately, the last chemical composition test has shown something else. Amber in terms of construction differs from the resin of today’s pine. Nowadays, there is a belief that succinite arose from several species of conifers, one of which was particularly dominant.


Red amber, how did it come from, where did this color come from?

Most people got used to the yellow and hazel color of amber, meanwhile, the color palette is much wider. We can distinguish red, orange, milky, greenish, and even blue amber. Its shade depends on the type of resin and the conditions in which it became fossilized. When it comes to transparency of amber, the presence of micro-bubbles in the structure of the mass is very important. They are a remnant of the water in the resin, which filled the substance with tiny bubbles of gas during evaporating.

Red and brown amber was created as a result of oxidation. The fossil exposed to long-lasting contact with air and took on intense colors. The saturation of shades depended primarily on the time when the gas affected amber. The longer it was, the darker the color became.