Amethyst is a form of quartz. Tiny amounts of iron and aluminum generating the purple color, creating the stone we call amethyst. Colors range from a deep purple to a light lavender. The name comes from a Greek word meaning “not drunken”.
Amethyst is both the traditional and the ayurvedic birthstone for February.
Luster: vitreous | Hardness: 7 | Density: 2.6
Legends & Lore:
- Greek mythology tells of Dionysus, the god of wine, who became angry with a mortal and swore revenge on the next mortal that crossed his path. He created fierce tigers to shred the mortal with their claws. A beautiful young maiden by the name of Amethyst was on her way to pay tribute to the goddess Diana when she crossed Dionysus’ path. To protect Amethyst, the goddess Diana turned Amethyst into a statue of pure crystal to protect her from the tigers. A remorseful Dionysus wept tears of wine that tinted the crystal statue purple. That purple crystal was forever known as Amethyst.
- Amethyst is thought to guard against intoxication and to drink from an amethyst cup was advantageous.
- It reduces anger, impatience and nightmares.
- Placing it under the pillow or worn to bed would promote a quiet peaceful sleep and pleasant dreams.
- Royals wore it, as it is the royal color purple.
- Leonardo da Vinci wrote that amethyst was able to dissipate evil thoughts and quicken the intelligence.
- In Tibet, amethyst is sacred to Buddha and rosaries can be found fashioned from it.
- It is South Carolina’s gemstone.