In every ancient culture which falls under the period ‘Antiquity’, there is evidence of jewellery. Many grand civilisations inhabited the area of Western Asia in antiquity, and their wealth and prosperity is demonstrated through their sophisticated jewellery making. Precious and semi-precious stones, such as agate, lapis lazuli, and carnelian, were also widely used.
Rock crystal is a transparent form of quartz found mainly in hydrothermal veins, where it is deposited as a precipitate from the movement of hot fluids in the Earth’s crust. The name derives from the Greek word for ice, krystallos. Rock crystal was used extensively as a gemstone across the ancient world in places such as Egypt and the Middle East, before eventually being replaced with clear glass and plastic in the modern world. Like other forms of quartz, such as amethyst and citrine, rock crystal is hard and strong, making it an ideal material for long-lasting jewellery.