The martyr’s gem: By its name you would think it would be red, but instead bloodstone is green jasper speckled with bright red spots of iron oxide. It is often referred to as the martyr’s gem because medieval Christians would carve scenes of the crucifixion and of martyrs on bloodstone. An ancient Christian legend held that bloodstone was formed when the blood of Christ fell from his hands, feet, and side and stained some jasper that was at the foot of the cross.
In ancient times, bloodstone was thought to be able to stop hemorrhages with only a touch. Some think it relieves stomach and bowel pain and strengthens the blood purifying organs and improves blood circulation. Bloodstone is also supposed to have a positive influence on a bladder. Today in India finely pulverized bloodstone is used as a medication and aphrodisiac.
It is mined in Brazil, China, India, Australia, and the United States (Wyoming). Quality specimens of bloodstone are not easy to find though it remains a quite affordable stone used frequently for pendants and bead necklaces.