Logwood (Haematoxylum campechianum), also known as campeche wood, is one of the oldest imported woods in the world. It was already brought in large quantities from the Caribbean to Europe in the 16th century from the Mexican port of Campéche. The tree is native to Meiko, (Yucatan), Central America and the Caribbean islands. Its wood, known as bluewood in trade, was the most important of all dyeing woods and in the 17th century it was highly sought after and very expensive in Europe. It was and is still used today as a raw material for colour extraction for the production of hematoxylin, a dye. The imported large blocks, which were cut clear from their light sapwood in south America already, are dark blood red to brown red on the outside, lighter, reddish brown to yellowish brown on the inside, and gradually turn dark reddish brown when exposed to air. The wood is hard and dense, difficult to split and, in addition to being used in dyeing, was rarely used as timber in fine joinery, although its fine scent of violets made it an attractive choice for gallantries and fancy fashion accessories.
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