Although rhodochrosite is found in many different localities, only a few supply the compact material which is used as an ornamental stone. It is commonly found in the form of stalactites and stalagmites in the caves of Argentina. Its use as an ornamental stone began just before the commencement of World War II, when a quantity of this stone came from San Luis in Argentina. The deposit from which it came was said to have been found in a long-disused mine situated on a mountain fissure at a high altitude, which was reputedly worked by the Incas for silver and copper during the thirteenth century. The Incas, who called it Inca Rose, believed that rhodochrosite is the blood of their former kings and queens / that was turned to stone. The supply of rhodochrosite has been diminishing every year.
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