Nature's Time Capsule
Did you know that all amber is over a million years old? In addition to having a beautiful glow and a wonderful scent when rubbed or burned, this fossilized tree resin tells us a lot about ancient ecosystems. Around 1,000 extinct animal species and types of plant matter have been found in amber. This particular amber from Poland weighs a whopping 135.5 carats and contains 2 scorpions and a few insects.
The Greeks called amber elektron, or “made by the sun.” Homer praised its bright glow. The Egyptians buried it in tombs for the afterlife. Today’s scientists value amber too: it provides a three-dimensional window into prehistoric ecosystems through the myriad animal and plant inclusions it contains.