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If you were born in February then you’re lucky enough to have the gemstone amethyst as your birthstone. Amethyst is a popular gemstone for its bright color, deep history, and various properties. The stone is also associated with 6th wedding anniversaries.
Amethyst is a type of quartz, and come in shades ranging from deep purple to light, pastel lavender. If you own amethyst jewelry that you want to learn more about, keep reading to find out what makes amethyst so special.
Amethysts have been prized gemstones since the time of the ancient Greeks. In fact, the origin of the purple gemstone’s name is derived from the Greek word “amethystos.” This translates to “remedy against drunkenness.”
Greeks associated this gemstone with the wine god, Bacchus, because of its grape-like color. They believed that wearing amethyst could keep you clear-headed and quick-witted, and protect you from drunkenness. Their wine goblets were made or decorated with amethyst to ward off the effects of their drinking.
They weren’t the only ones to cherish amethyst though. Purple has always been regarded as a regal color, so amethysts have been seen in religious and royal jewelry too. Buddhists believed amethyst powers helped guide meditation and used the stone in their prayer beads. Even today, some amethysts decorate the British Crown Jewels.
Amethyst was regarded in similar fashion to other precious gemstones like diamonds, rubies, sapphires, and emeralds, until the 1800’s. After a large deposit of amethyst was found in Brazil, the gemstone’s financial value significantly changed. Amethyst is still considered a semi-precious gemstone, and the Brazilian deposit allows for larger amethysts to be used more often in jewelry.
The stone is often prized for its symbolism as well as its beauty. The February birthstone is associated with a number of different properties including peace, courage, balance, and inner strength. It is also thought that amethyst brings wisdom and protection to its wearer.
Amethyst is also thought of as the “sobriety stone” due to its history, and is believed to help treat alcoholism and addiction. Besides being worn as jewelry, amethyst geodes are also popular household decorations since they promote positive energy and calmness.
Amethyst is ranked a 7 out of 10 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness, meaning it’s a fairly durable gemstone. This makes the stone a good choice for everyday wear. Be careful to avoid prolonged exposure to heat as well as chemicals. These things can cause the color of the stone to wear over time. Just like the rest of your jewelry, be sure to bring it in regularly to be professionally cleaned by your jeweler.
If you have amethyst jewelry that needs to be appraised please contact us to make an appointment with our independent appraiser, Elliot Grunwald. Our office is conveniently located inside of Leo Hamel Fine Jewelers on San Diego Avenue. So be sure to view the amethyst jewelry in the showroom if you’re shopping for a February birthday or 6th wedding anniversary as well!