Other Baltic amber properties?

Photo: Ivo Rappsilber
Photo: Ivo Rappsilber

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Amber is not rock-hard

Hardness on the Mohs scale is 2 to 2,5. It can be scratched with a needle, amber is easy to drill, saw, grind, polish and turn on the lathe.


More precise characteristic than hardness is equal 199-290 MPa (19.9-29 kG/mm2).

Amber can be split in any direction

All forms have a shiny conchoidal fracture surface.


The ancient Greeks discovered that rubbing their amber pieces to remove dust and dirt only made the amber collect more debris.

Amber becomes electrostatically charged and attract scraps.

The urge to understand this eventually led to our current knowledge of electricity.

Amber is a good insulator

The electrons are held quite tightly and are not free to move easily from place to place. Charge cannot flow along or through an insulator, so its electric forces remain for long periods of time. Charge will dissipate from an insulator, given enough time.

Solar amulet | Archaeological Museum in Gdańsk
Solar amulet from the Stone Age | Archaeological Museum in Gdańsk
Photo: Ivo Rappsilber
Photo: Ivo Rappsilber

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