The word was adopted in Middle English in the 14th century as referring to what is now known as ambergris (ambre gris or "grey amber"), a solid waxy substance derived from the sperm whale.
The two substances ("yellow amber" and "grey amber") conceivably became associated or confused because they both were found washed up on beaches.
Ambergris is less dense than water and floats, whereas amber is too dense to float, though less dense than stone.
Amber is discussed by Theophrastus in the 4th century BC, and again by Pytheas (c.
330 BC) whose work "On the Ocean" is lost, but was referenced by Pliny the Elder, according to whose The Natural History (in what is also the earliest known mention of the name Germania): Pytheas says that the Gutones, a people of Germany, inhabit the shores of an estuary of the Ocean called Mentonomon, their territory extending a distance of six thousand stadia; that, at one day's sail from this territory, is the Isle of Abalus, upon the shores of which, amber is thrown up by the waves in spring, it being an excretion of the sea in a concrete form; as, also, that the inhabitants use this amber by way of fuel, and sell it to their neighbors, the Teutones.
Pliny says that a large island of three days' sail from the Scythian coast called Balcia by Xenophon of Lampsacus, author of a fanciful travel book in Greek, is called Basilia by Pytheas.
It is generally understood to be the same as Abalus.Based on the amber, the island could have been Heligoland, Zealand, the shores of Bay of Gdansk, the Sambia Peninsula or the Curonian Lagoon, which were historically the richest sources of amber in northern Europe.It is assumed that there were well-established trade routes for amber connecting the Baltic with the Mediterranean (known as the "Amber Road").Downton star Michelle Dockery found plenty to smile about as she filmed scenes with her co-star Juan Diego Botto at a baseball game.The pretty brunette was spotted laughing and joking with the handsome Spanish actor as they filmed US drama Good Behavior in Wilmington, North Carolina.Dressed down in figure-hugging blue jeans and red blouse, the co-stars were spotted watching the game.