Amethyst is a violet variety of quartz crystal. It has been regarded as the stone of sobriety for millennia. It owes its name to the Ancient Greeks, which translated means ‘not intoxicated.’ It is associated with Bacchus, the god of wine and wine goblets were fashioned from amethyst to ward off alcoholism. Tibetians consider it a stone sacred to Buddha and use it to make prayer beads. Royalty world-wide dating back to the ancient Egyptians have adorned their regalia with amethyst. It is found in the British Crown Jewels and in the jewelery of Russia’s Catherine the Great. Alike, it has been liberally used by the Catholic Church in the rings of bishops, cardinals, and popes. It is said to aid in clearing the head and sharpening decision-making skills. Up to the late 1800’s, amethyst was one of the world’s most valuable gemstones, until massive deposits were discovered in Brazil, which continues to be the world’s leading source for amethyst. Other large deposits can be found in the Urals in Russia, Madagascar, and Canada.

The silver in your amethyst piece can be polished with a chemically-treated polishing cloth, but be sure not the polish the stone. The stone can be cleaned wih a soft, wet cloth. Amethyst can lose its color if exposed to sunlight and extreme temperature changes so store in a dark, temperate location.

Amethyst is the birthstone of February and the gem for both the 6th and 17th wedding anniversaries. It is the official state gemstone of South Carolina.

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