Precious Stone Cargoes
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Precious Stone Cargoes (Revelation 18.11-12a)

"The merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her because no one buys their cargoes anymore— 12 cargoes of gold, silver, precious stones and pearls; fine linen, purple, silk and scarlet cloth; every sort of citron wood." (Revelation 18.11-12a)✞

The Fascination of a Gem

Alexandrian ShipsThe Roman Empire was an age which passionately loved "precious stone cargoes and pearls." It was largely through the conquests of Alexander the Great that precious stones came to the west. Pliny the Elder (23-79 AD) wrote, "The fascination of a gem was that the majestic might of nature presented itself in a limited space."

Diamonds and Emeralds

Large EmeraldOf all the the precious stones, diamonds were most sought after along with emeralds from Scythia. Beryl and opals were used for women's ornaments and sardonyx a red form of the onyx stone was used for the seals of rings. One of the strangest of ancient beliefs was that precious stones had medicinal qualities. The amethyst was said to be a cure for drunkenness! It is wine-red in color and the word "amethyst" means "not to make drunk."

"Precious Stone Cargoes"
by Ron Meacock © 2017

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