Hematite, the Blood Stone
Legend has it, Hematite formed from the bloodshed that fell beneath the earth during fierce battles. Thus, it has long been connected to Mars, the red god of war. It was believed that when warriors rubbed their bodies with hematite, they became invulnerable to harm.
An opaque mineral with a metallic luster, Hematite often appears black or silvery from the outside. Though, its metallic sheen conceals its secret "true" color, blood-red. When cut into thin slices or ground to powder, it shows itself to be a deep blood-red color.
Native Americans are said to have used hematite as a pigment for a paste called red ochre. This paste was then applied as war paint and believed to make these warriors invincible in battle. Similarly, the ancient Romans also believed hematite would bring them invincibility during battle as well as strength and courage. They crushed the stone and rubbed its powder on their bodies and armor prior to entering battle.
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