Sunday, February 5, 2012

Amazing Amethyst: February's Lovely Lilac Birthstone


Violet Purple Amethyst Gemstone Necklace by bespangledjewelry on Etsy

I find amethyst to be one of the most wonderfully intriguing gemstones; it simply boggles the mind that a stone this color could come out of the ground and be so alluring and such a rich and amazing color naturally!  I mean, it's a rock for crying out loud!!

This pretty purple rock is a variety of transparent quartz and is the birthstone associated with the month of February. It comes in a wide range of purples, from a very pale almost colorless version to a deep dark purple which has been popular among royalty and religious leaders for centuries. Somewhere in the middle of this color spectrum is a soft lilac color that reminds me of a pair of strappy high heel shoes my Grandma used to wear so she could reach the 5-foot tall mark :)

Amethyst Faceted Rectangular Pillow beads
by bespangledbeads on Etsy
Among the beliefs that amethyst holds certain magical powers and the ability to open up the third eye and heighten awareness, is the assertion that amethyst quartz crystals have the ability to lessen the effects of alcohol.  In fact, the very name 'amethyst' comes from the ancient Greek word amethystos, meaning not drunken.

Now, I'm not sure why, but this seems a little funny to me...perhaps because I picture some ancient Greek dude carrying around a couple of chunks of amethyst in his toga pocket ( - I'm almost positive that togas would have pockets - ) and coming back home to his wife after a night on the town with his ancient Greek buddies, convinced that he seems much less drunk than he actually is because he's been carrying around some purple stones the whole time.

Well, I digress. Aside from the silly connotations that its nomenclature implies, amethyst is a truly amazing gemstone and I plan to continue designing pretty things with it often!

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