Iron oxide used to produce red body paint for ceremonical occasions.
Letter from Christopher Wren to Mr. T.H. Powell: 'Dear Sir; I have made up a selection of implements with some things and shall ship them to you tomorrow by express. Among them are the following; [passage omitted] 2 pieces of red (war) paint, iron oxide [one of these is likely to be this object] [passage omitted] All of the pieces are marked on the wrappers so that you can catalogue them definitely. They are all from the territory which William Penn bought from the Indians and near the largest river in the State. I hope the specimens will add something new to your collection. Very Truly Yours, Christopher Wren'