Bloodstone Meaning and Properties

Bloodstone History

Also called heliotrope, bloodstone is a form of chalcedony that includes opaque mossy greens and brick reds in an agate base, which can be opaque to translucent. Fire Mountain Gems and Beads offers both African bloodstone and Indian bloodstone. Although it was called "the Stone of Babylon" in late Classical times, by the Christian era it was named "the stone of martyrs." During the Middle Ages, the red spots were thought to be drops of Christ's blood, which gave the stone magical powers. In the 4th century, it was believed to make rain, create solar eclipses and give the power of invisibility.

Bloodstone is most often cut en cabochon or as large smooth beads in order to display the red spatter pattern. It has often been used for lapidary carving, especially in the use of seal stones, as well as figurines and statuettes.

Bloodstone Metaphysical Properties

Bloodstone is associated with two Western zodiac signs: Aries, Pisces and the so-called "new" sign Ophiuchus (snake-bearer). This connects the stone to the months of February, March, November and December.

Bloodstone is believed to work on the circulatory system: strengthening veins, toning the heart and fortifying the blood--all things that contribute to a long, healthy life. It is also associated with "getting your blood up"--the infusion of a person with courage and strength of purpose.

Bloodstone Geological Properties

This stone is a variety of jasper or chalcedony with bright red spot inclusions. The green color is caused by chlorite or hornblende within the chalcedony matrix. It commonly displays a range of lighter and darker green zones. The red spots, like the planet Mars, are iron oxide.

This material is rarely dyed, heated or enhanced, though it is occasionally imitated. This hard stone is difficult to scratch and most imitations are made from significantly softer materials, making them easy to spot using a simple scratch test. When polished, it naturally appears slightly waxy.

Bloodstone is primarily found in India, with additional deposits in Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Bulgaria, China, Scotland and the United States.

Mineral Information Microcrystalline quartz, chalcedony group
Chemical Composition SiO2
Color Deep green and white, spotted with red
Hardness 6-1/2 to 7 (Mohs)
Specific Gravity 2.58 - 2.64
Refractive Index 1.530 - 1.539

Proper Care of Bloodstone

Bloodstone can be cleaned using warm water, a mild soap and a soft cloth. Be sure to rinse the stone and pat it dry before storing. While it is difficult to scratch, it is not impossible to damage (and it certainly can damage other stones), so store bloodstone separately in a fabric bag.

To learn more about bloodstone and other gemstones, order your copy of Walter Schumann's revised and expanded edition of Gemstones of the World.

Designing with Bloodstone

You'll love the rich look and feel of this gemstone material. The deep green and white chalcedony with occasional red spots is ideal for fall and winter. Subtle yet festive, bloodstone is a popular material for holiday designs as well as men's jewelry.

View design inspirations featuring bloodstone in the Gallery of Designs

Shop for Bloodstone Items

**Please note that all metaphysical or healing properties listed are collected from various sources. This information is offered as a service and not meant to treat medical conditions. Fire Mountain Gems and Beads® does not guarantee the validity of any of these statements.

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