Amber is fascinating, it is both a fossil and a gem. Amber is a fossilised tree resin that is a time capsule of the past, often containing flora and fauna from ancient times. To be true Amber the fossilised resin has to be more than 20 million years old, fossil resins that are younger are called copal, copal is brittle and will crack and craze over time, although pretty it is too soft to be set in jewellery. Over the past ten years The Rare and Beautiful have been fortunate enough to have put together an amazing collection of Burmese Amber containing both insect and plant material.
It's not easy to source top quality Burmese Amber, we have built friendships with miners and cutters during our past 12 visits to this magical country and they supply us with the best material available. This amazing Amber is from Katchin state in the north of the country commonly called Burmite it is Cretaceous in age, 100million years old, from the time of the dinosaurs, it is the hardest of all Ambers making it especially suitable for jewellery. Burmite comes in a variety of colours from almost clear through yellow, orange, red, brown and an opaque variety called wood Amber. This special Gem has been prized by Chinese craftsmen for around 2000 years.
A huge variety of rare inclusions are found in Burmese Amber, including all sorts of insects, shells , lizards, feathers from ancient birds and dinosaurs, flowers , ferns ,leaves and other plant material. Evolutionary history is being re written due to these remarkable finds in Amber. On our recent trip to Burma we were lucky enough to buy several large packages of Amber and when we return from Asia we will be loading some wonderful material for sale on our web site as well as offering it for sale at our Salamanca market stall and at the gem and antique fairs we attend .To compliment our range of Burmese Amber we have also have Amber from Sumatra and Borneo for sale. This Amber is Miocene in age 20-30 million years and much of it is a wonderful red colour. Although not as hard as Burmite it is still easily hard enough to be worn in jewellery. We acquired some exceptionally large pieces, some over a kilo in weight. After many years of cutting gemstones, making jewellery and doing gemmological studies I've found Burmese amber to be one of the most fascinating materials I've come across. The Rare and Beautiful will continue to collect this amazing Burmese Amber on our regular trips to Burma. If your interested in something special, a lizard, a dinosaur feather or a shell in Amber drop us a line and we can find it for you.
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