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When February rolls around, most of us are finally regaining a kind of equilibrium after the mad dash of family-feasting-holidays followed by the inevitably noble new diet plan, better habits, and ambitious goals for the new year.
What better gem to herald in this new month than the Amethyst, the expression of earth that many of us first encountered in geography class, not as a perfect, polished centerpiece for jewelry, but as a cluster of dramatically jutting frosted white, clear, and purple crystals.
Amethyst is one of those few crystals that is as equally beautiful in its raw, rough form as in its finished state. Some larger pieces are more often valued by collectors as whole, unrefined pieces than they are when they are broken down and polished.
So as we enter this new year, perhaps slightly beaten back by how hard those New Year’s resolutions actually are to keep, we can celebrate the beauty of our “roughness” with this unique stone, perfect in all its forms.
Some Facts about Amethyst
In modern times, Amethyst is beloved for its equal affordability and beauty and, of course, its signature purple color. Amethyst has been found featured in man-made adornment dating as far back as the ancient Egyptians, and was once prized as one of the top five precious stones, until large deposits were discovered in Brazil. In Tibet, it was considered sacred to the Buddha and used to make prayer beads. It symbolized royalty in the European Middle Ages, and was considered one of the Cardinal gems in the Old World.
The greatest stores of Amethyst are found in the state of Minas Gerais in Brazil, hidden within large geodes encased in volcanic rocks. The best varieties of Amethyst hail from Brazil as well as Siberia, Sri Lanka, and the far East. Its hardness is the same as quartz, which makes it perfect for jewelry.
Amethyst’s Special Significance
Scientists say that we can thank irradiation, iron impurities, and the presence of trace elements for Amethyst’s enchanting violet hue. However, the Greeks had a different story. The name “Amethyst” comes from the Greek word ametusthos (“not intoxicated,”) and derives from a legend in which Bacchus, the wine god, grew angry over an insult and promised that the next person he saw would be eaten by his tigers. When a beautiful young woman named Amethyst happened along on her way to worship at the shrine of the goddess Diana, the tigers attacked her. She beseeched Diana for protection and, in return, was turned into a clear white crystal. Regretful and ashamed, Bacchus poured the wine of his grapes over the crystal as an offering, forever lending it its purple tinge.
Believed to ward off drunkenness, Greeks and Romans often incorporated Amethyst into decorations on their wine goblets. In addition to intoxication, Amethyst was believed to ward off over-indulgence and to promote a clear head when conducting business affairs and in battle, perfect for departing from our New Year’s celebrations and keeping our focus on this year’s goals. As the birth-stone for February, it’s also great for celebrating Valentine’s day, as it is associated with St. Valentine and faithful love.
Amethyst is currently considered a source of spirituality and peace, and its abilities to inspire a heightened state of meditation. It is said to have a high frequency and energetic vibration, capable of purifying one’s aura of negative attachments or energy. It is also said to stimulate the Third Eye, Crown, and Etheric Chakras for enhanced cognitive, intuitive, and psychic ability.
Ring in your February by giving yourself or your loved one this precious “wine-kissed” gift to celebrate clarity, loyalty, and this splendid journey we are all on, from “rough” to “perfect.” Check out our designs for some inspiration.