17 January 2017
The birthstone for February is amethyst. It's a semi-precious stone and measures 7 on Mohs hardness scale, so is not suitable for everyday wear. However if you are a fan of purple, but want something more robust, then purple sapphire would be your best bet. We have a couple of rings with fantastic purple sapphires in the shop if you would like to have a look!
We all know that Valentine's day is on the 14th of February, but did you know the patron of romantic love, St Valentine, was said to wear an amethyst ring carved with the image of cupid?
Amethyst is a member of the quartz family and, in Bolivia, often forms in the same crystal as citrine. This unusual gem is half yellow and half purple and is called ametrine.
Until the 19th Century, amethyst was as expensive as ruby and emerald, which is why it appears in the crowns of royalty and the rings of bishops. That changed when large deposits were discovered in Brazil.
Early Greek legends associated amethyst with Bacchus (god of wine) due to the stone's colour. Because amethyst was associated with wine, it was believed to prevent intoxication. It was purported to keep away evil thoughts and promote intelligence (I definitely should get some).
We have a few of our friendly stone dealers who have really impressive Amethysts, like the two above, so if purple is your colour, get in touch!