Interesting Facts About Amethyst, the Birthstone of February

Did you know that amethyst was believed by Ancient Greeks and Romans to prevent hangovers?

The sparkling purple color of amethyst is hard to miss and it is not just beautiful, it holds great sentimental value. It is associated with the Aquarius zodiac sign and is the birthstone for February. Additionally, it is a perfect gift for your sixth or 33rd wedding anniversary. Here are some amazing facts about the amethyst gemstone:

Amethyst is a type of Quartz and other well-known Quartz varieties include Citrine, Prasiolite, Smokey Quartz, Rose Quartz, Onyx, Agate, and Jasper.

The purple color of amethyst comes from iron residues, irradiation, and trace/transition metals. It is important to care for your amethyst crystal properly as leaving it out in the sun can change its color from purple to orange or brown.

Amethyst can transform into other types of Quartz family members, such as Citrine and Prasiolite, when exposed to high temperatures.

Drinking cups decorated with amethyst or carved from it were standard in ancient times as the Greeks and Romans believed that this purple stone could help them avoid a hangover.

The word “amethyst” comes from the Greek word “Amethystos” which means “not intoxicated.” Christian bishops had amethyst in their episcopal ring set to protect them from getting drunk.

Although amethyst usually has a primary color ranging from light lavender to dark purple, it may also have a secondary color. Secondary amethyst hues include red and blue.

The proper name for what is popularly called green amethyst is Prasiolite.

Amethyst used to be one of the most valuable gemstones, along with Diamonds, Sapphires, Rubies, and Emeralds. However, the discovery of large amethyst deposits in Brazil in the 18th century changed that. It is now classified as a semi-precious stone with reserves in Russia, Zambia, Uruguay, South India, the United States, and South Korea.

The rarest type of amethyst is the deep Russian amethyst. It was originally mined in Siberia but can now be found in mines in Uruguay and the US.

Amethyst has a history of about 25,000 years. It was first discovered in French mines and was used for decoration and adornment.

Amethyst was worn by Saint Valentine and Cleopatra because it was believed to hold the secret to love and beauty. It makes a great Valentine’s Day present because of its connection to love, even if you are not marking a wedding anniversary.

Amethyst is often hidden inside geodes formed millions of years ago. The amethyst geode found in the National Museum of Scotland formed 130 million years ago in Brazil. It can also be found alongside quartz in igneous, metamorphosed, and some sedimentary rocks.

Amethyst is valued in different religions. Buddhists include it in prayer beads as it is believed to be cherished by Buddha. It is also one of the gemstones mentioned in the Bible. It was the symbol for the tribe of Dan and was added to the prophet Aaron’s breastplate.

Amethyst ranks seventh on the Mohs hardness scale, which is slightly above a steel nail rated at 6.5. Although it is excellent for all types of jewelry, it needs lots of care to prevent chipping and scratching.

Amethyst typically forms in a hexagonal shape with six sides, often appearing as a pyramid. Although not as highly valued as in the past, amethyst still holds significance as it can be used for beautiful jewelry and has spiritual meaning. Known as the stone of peace, it is believed to possess healing properties that can calm the mind and promote spiritual well-being. The best part is that it is easily accessible, allowing anyone to enjoy its beauty and benefits.


1. What is amethyst?

Amethyst is a violet variety of quartz that is the traditional birthstone for February. It is found in many places around the world, including Brazil, Uruguay, Zambia, and Russia. Amethyst is a popular gemstone that is often used in jewelry, and it is also used for spiritual and healing purposes.

2. What are the properties of amethyst?

Amethyst has a hardness of 7 on the Mohs scale, which makes it suitable for use in jewelry. It is a transparent to translucent gemstone that can range in color from pale lilac to deep purple. The color of amethyst is caused by the presence of iron and other trace elements in the quartz crystal structure. Amethyst is also known for its metaphysical properties, including its ability to promote calmness and clarity of thought.

3. What are some interesting myths and legends about amethyst?

Throughout history, amethyst has been associated with various myths and legends. In ancient Greece, it was believed that amethyst could ward off drunkenness, so it was often worn as a charm by people who wanted to avoid overindulging in alcohol. In Christian mythology, it was said that amethyst was created when Saint Valentine prayed for protection against temptation. In some Native American cultures, amethyst was used in healing ceremonies and was believed to have the power to ward off evil spirits.

4. What are some famous amethysts?

There are many famous amethysts in the world, including the 19th-century amethyst tiara that belongs to the Swedish royal family. The tiara features five large amethysts that are set in a diamond and gold frame. Another famous amethyst is the so-called “Marie Antoinette amethyst,” a large gemstone that was once owned by the queen of France. The gemstone was later acquired by the Smithsonian Institution, where it is now on display.

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