Mineral Guide > Precious Stones > Amber gem stone

Amber gem stone

Amber gem stoneAmber is a fossil gum of trees of the genus Pinus, and is thus a vegetable rather than mineral product. In color it is yellow varying to reddish, brownish, and whitish. Its hardness is 2 to 2.5, it being slightly harder than gypsum and softer than calcite. It cannot be scratched by the finger nail, but easily and deeply with a knife. It is also brittle.
The specific gravity of amber is scarcely greater than that of water, the exact specific weight being 1.050-1.096. It thus almost floats in water, especially sea water. It is transparent to translucent.

Amber picture