February Birthstone – Amethyst
The February birthstone Amethyst is the purple variety of Quartz and has been a popular gemstone for centuries. It is a very durable gem so it can last for a very long time. It can come in many shades of Purple from light pinkish purple to the intense and highly saturated blueish purple gems.
Historically, Amethyst is said to stop a person from getting drunk. The Greeks would actually drink out of Amethyst Goblets hoping to ward off intoxication. I wonder if it worked?
February Birthstone Color
Since purple has always been the color of royalty, amethysts abound in the ornaments of in the British Crown jewels and in the adornments of the ancient Greeks and Egyptians as well. Purple dye was once scarce and very expensive, therefore it was reserved for the garment of royalty, the color then regarded as symbol of power and status. Tibetans consider amethyst sacred to Buddha and fashion rosaries from amethyst beads.
One of th most amazing features of the February birthstone is that it can be found in giant geodes. Geodes are the natural formation of this mineral where empty pockets are filled with a liquid rich in minerals. As this liquid cools, it creates Amethyst. Geodes can be as big as a house or the size of a small child. They are generally filled with hundreds of little Amethyst spikes.
Most Amethyst comes from the regions of South America such as Brazil and Uruguay. Recently there has been a discovery of Amethyst from Zambia that is truly amazing. It has such a beautiful colour and I have seen it used in some amazing pieces of jewellery. It is such a common mineral that it can be found almost anywhere. Here in Australia there large deposits of Amethyst that have big beautiful crystals inside of them.