A sometimes subtle and varying green, Peridot is unassuming and is a lovely birthstone for August.
LESSER KNOWN FACTS
Peridot is one of the few gemstones to only occur in one colour.
The intensity and tint of this green gemstone dubbed 'emerald of the crusaders', depends on how much iron is contained in the crystal structure. As a result it varies from yellow-green through olive green and occasionally a brown hue which is caused by mica flakes.
Peridot can reach quite large sizes – the largest beinga cut Peridot of 319 carats in the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, USA.
HISTORY IN A NUTSHELL
It has been mined as a gemstone for an estimated 5,000 years, in particular, on the island of Zagbargad, now known as Zebirget, in the Red Sea.
Beads were made by the Egyptians as early as 1580 – 1350BC, and it was considered a symbol of the sun from ancient times to the Middle Ages.
An early Greek manuscript says that it confers royal dignity on its bearer, and in the 11th century the French bishop, Marbodius, stated that to be protected from evil spirits, its owner should pierce a peridot and string it on the hair of an ass, before tying it around the left arm.
LEGEND HAS IT
Peridot can bring openness and acceptance to the intellectual pursuit in matters of love and relationships.
WHERE IN THE WORLD
6.5 - 7