February Birth Stone Amethyst
About Amethyst Gems, The Birthstone For The Month February
The February birth stone is amethyst, a type of quartz that has been known to mankind for many centuries. The origin of the name amethyst is rather interesting. Derived from the Greek word 'amethystos', it means protection against intoxication. It is therefore no wonder that the Greeks consumed alcoholic drinks in glasses carved from amethyst stone. Doing this was supposed to prevent drukenness! This birthstone for the month of February, is generally found in shades of violet-purple. Your amethyst birthstone jewel could contain a very pale violet gem, a medium purple amethyst gemstone or a darker shade of the same color. We would suggest that you keep away from the very pale purple amethyst, there is almost no color visibility and the gemstone looks lifeless in yellow or white gold and even in sterling silver.
Besides the beauty and grace of this February birthstone, there are a few more good things that await amethyst lovers. This amazing gemstone has a price that is very affordable. The paler shades of amethyst are cheaper than the medium to darker colored gems but, given the beauty of the gem even the darker gems can be classified as truly affordable gems. Amethyst is mined in many countries, buyers need to care only about the color and clarity of the gem and not worry about the origin. If you are talking about amethyst gems in the below 3 to 4 carat range, always insist on eye clean gems with no inclusions. When it comes to the darker shades of purple, amethyst gems could show color zoning. A little observation is required here, the color zoning would not matter if the gem looks good from the top view. After all that is how the gem would be seen once mounted in an amethyst birthstone jewel. The terms African amethyst and Brazilian amethyst are today used more to differentiate the color of purple amethyst rather than, to define the origin of the stone. Pale to medium purple amethyst is called Brazilian amethyst, the darker shades of purple amethyst are commonly referred to as African amethyst.
Since the gem is not too expensive, amethyst is often cut into fancy shapes and multiple faceted cuts (checkerboard) can also be found. If you are looking for a february birth stone ring, try to get a gold or sterling silver amethyst gem stone ring where the gem does not protrude too much from the surface of the ring. This will reduce the chances of the gemstone hitting against hard surfaces. If you fancy an amethyst birthstone bracelet, remember that impressive gem sizes like oval 10x8, trillion 10mm and even heart shaped amethyst gems of size 8 to 10mm are affordable. One factor that will influence the price of your amethyst gemstone ring is the metal weight. Jewels with large dimensions need good metal weight to become strong and sturdy. This is where an evaluation of using gold or sterling silver might have to be made.
Before we close this discussion on amethyst, we would like to say a bit about green amethyst. A very pale green type of quartz was introduced in the jewelry industry a few years ago. This gemstone was called green amethyst and gem dealers sold it at very high prices as compared to amethyst. Stories about high rare this green gem was encouraged gem and jewelry lovers to cough up substantial amounts for buying green amethyst jewelry. A few years later it became known that many thousand tonnes of this green gem still existed in the mines. The gemstone got a new name 'Prasiolite' and was rightly differentiated from the gorgeous pale-purple amethyst.
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