Gemstones of ancient civilizations

Gemstones are masterpieces of nature, and their mysterious sparkle has fascinated man from time immemorial. The representative publication conveys the history of precious stones, as well as history as such. Gemstones on its 382 pages, in 332 photographs and 64 illustrations reveal to us the life and problems of ancient civilizations. The compelling text and extensive visual material draw readers directly into the long gone times which they discover step by step thanks to the systematic documentation of archaeological finds – artefacts made of precious stones.
The book is unique in its scope; it presents a summary of the existing knowledge about the subject. It will be of use to experts on various ancient civilizations and those interested in mineralogy and archaeology, but it will also certainly impress any lover of beauty, history and precious stones.

Author: Ivan Mrázek

ISBN 978-80-210-6122-4
382 pages
21 × 30 cm

Price: 680 Kč

Take a look at the contents

The author of the book, Dr. Ivan Mrázek (1940), studied geology at faculties of science at Masaryk University and Charles University. During his professional career he devoted particular interest to gemstones. He published the results of his research in several books; the present volume is his tenth scientific publication. He gathered materials for the book over many years; he critically evaluated published data, he visited the world's major museums and archaeological sites around the world.

The book was awarded as the most beautiful book of Havlíčkuv Brod Autumn Book Fair 2013 and the award for scientific literature awarded by Josef Hlávka Foundation (2014). It was shortlisted for Magnesia Litera Book Award.

Read the sample chapter:


Introduction • Mesopotamia • Harappan civilization • Ancient China • Ancient Egypt • Cretan-Mycenaean civilization • The classical era Mesoamerica and Central America • Andean cultures

Foreign translation rights offer

Josefa Hlávka Foundation Award for scientific literature

Orders should be directed to:
Masaryk University Press
Rybkova 19
602 00 Brno
Czech Republic