A for Amethyst

A for Amethyst

Wine color of the royal, yet affordable gem.

The name amethyst derives from the ancient Greek word «amethustos» – meaning sober.

In Greek mythology, amethyst was a rock dyed purple by the tears of Dionysus, the god of wine and revelry. Ancient greeks believed that an amethyst instills a sober and serious mind. For example, if a person drank from a cup or a goblet made of amethyst, they would not get drunk at all.

Amethyst was once considered as valuable as ruby, emerald, and sapphire. Fine amethysts have been set in religious jewelry and royal crown jewels for ages. It’s believed that amethyst was one of the twelve stones that adorned the breastplate of the high priest Aaron. The Apostle Matthias and the Guardian Angel Adnachiel are associated with Amethyst, as well. During the Middle Ages, Amethyst stood for piety and celibacy and therefore was worn by members of the Catholic Church clergy and used to adorn crosses.

During the Renaissance, Amethyst symbolised humility and modesty. Throughout the ages, powerful and rich monarchs have used Amethyst as a symbol of royalty, and some Amethysts even decorate the British Crown Jewels. Rumor has it, Amethyst was the favorite gem of Queen Catherine the Great of Russia!

What about today?

Well, Amethyst was as expensive and valuable as ruby and emerald until the 19th century – when Brazil’s large deposits were discovered. Ooops! Today, as the most valued quartz variety, amethyst is in demand for designer pieces and retains wide consumer appeal.

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