What is Amethyst?
Amethyst is one of the most popular gemstones in the world.
It is a purple variety of quartz, the traditional birthstone for February and a semi precious stone often used in jewellery. Ranging from soft hues of lavender to rich violet tone, light to dark purple, transparent to semi-translucent, the crystal garners high recognition from people because of its exquisite and regal shade in varying gradients of purple.Scientifically, the stone’s color is the result of the incorporation of iron into its crystal growth, which is irradiated with gamma rays from radioactive materials present in the host rock. It has a hardness score of 7 on the Mohs scales, which means that the stone is a durable one and is perfect for making different jewelry pieces that even need meticulous and very detailed carving. Its hardness also makes it very suitable for making sophisticated and high-quality jewelry parts that are used to make designer jewelry pieces in different size and shape variations, as it does not easily break.
Sometimes solid and sometimes streaked, Amethyst stones could feature beautiful patches and patterns that are usually in white tones. Although its regal shade of purple is greatly visible when the stone has a pure solid color, uniquely patterned ones are also equally pretty and in demand.
Chemical Composition: SiO2
Crystal Structure: Trigonal; hexagonal prisms
Hardness: 7 on the Mohs scale
Amethyst BirthstoneAmethyst is the birthstone for February.
Aside from Amethyst, there are a lot of gemstones to choose from in considering a birthstone--a stone to symbolize someone’s birth month; however, Amethyst’s assignation as the birthstone for the zodiac sign Pisces and the month of February is made more apt because of its history.
It came from the legend of St. Valentine wearing an amethyst ring carved with Cupid’s likeness. As the stone is also considered a stone of pure love in the Medieval times, it is said that the way how St. Valentine wore his Amethyst ring was a sign of pure love--and it is something that Amethyst crystals signify.
The splendidly purple stone, Amethyst, is among the fundamental gems of both the ancient and the modern civilization.
In ancient Greek, the crystal is believed to derive its name from the word “Amethystos”, which means “not drunk”, as it is believed to have the capacity of preventing its wearer from getting drunk, or relieving the wearer from drunken state. In Greek mythology, Amethyst was a maiden who was turned by the goddess Diana into a beautiful clear stone when the god of wine, Bacchus, tried to unleash his wrath upon her while having succumbed to the consequences of his defeat in a fight. Upon becoming sober, Bacchus poured his wine to the stone, whose beautiful grape color turned it into a beautiful purple crystal. The crystal was named after the beautiful maiden Amethyst.
Amethyst : Meaning & Healing PropertiesAmethyst is said to be a stone associated with protection, balance and clarity. It is also known to have healing properties and stress-relieving power.
Aside from symbolizing pure love, Amethyst is also popular for its ability to calm the emotions and passion of its wearer, and to make things around feel lighter.
Through time, Amethyst has been associated with a lot of good metaphysical properties including the provision of intelligence, getting rid of evil thoughts, protection against diseases, and even bringing prosperity and success. In the Renaissance era, Amethyst was a valuable stone used in adorning monarchs, as its color symbolized royalty--like how the color purple look stunningly regal in the modern times. These and many other good properties of the stone are highly regarded until today.
In fact, these wonderful beneficial properties are what make the stone one of the most sought-after crystals nowadays.
Choosing Your Amethyst StoneSince Amethyst is among the widely used gemstones in the gem world both for its beauty and uses, it is but an imperative to explore how the stone can be made into different interesting and useful things, especially jewelries. If you’re shopping for a February birthday gift, an Amethyst jewelry is a can’t-miss choice.
Amethyst usually makes a vitreous or glassy luster when polished nicely, and creates a kind of glow that adds to its overall aesthetic. When made into faceted loose stones, Amethyst would exhibit a beautiful sparkly effect especially when hit by light.
Experienced lapidarists (or gem-cutters) polish and cut Amethyst stones into dainty pieces of jewelry parts like Amethyst cabochons, Amethyst earring stones, and Amethyst pendant stones, and other attractive adornments like Amethyst carvings. Because the most convenient way of bringing luck is to always have them around, Amethyst crystals are made into jewelry pieces for them to be carried around, worn and/or used comfortably and fashionably.
Although the stone is relatively durable, its color--which is an important factor considered by collectors and jewelry makers--is susceptible to change. When heated naturally or intentionally, the stone’s purple color changes significantly from purple to a shade like that of pale green. However, most commonly, gem and jewelry collectors also find this “green variety” as fashionable, which is why it is actually referred to as the “green Amethyst”in the market.
Geographic DistributionSince Amethyst is one of the common crystals, it can be found all over the globe and fits supply does not significantly diminish. However, there are places that record higher supplies of the stone as compared to others. Brazil, Austria, Uruguay, Tanzania and some states of the USA are among these places where Amethyst crystal production, especially those that are good for being commercialized, is high.
Taking Care of Your Amethyst StoneWith a high hardness score, everyone may think jewelries made from Amethyst is safe from scratches; however, like other gemstones, Amethyst is also susceptible to scratches when being exposed to great impacts. It is, therefore, advised that extra care should be given to any Amethyst jewelry like how one would take care of a particular belonging : do not expose it to agents that could cause great impact, and do not expose it to extreme heat to retain its elegant purple color.