The Amethyst belongs to the family of macro crystalline quartz (formed by large crystals), together with Citrine, Rose Quartz and Tiger Eye among others. Its color ranges from pastel pink tones to a dark purple. The coloring element of the Amethyst is iron.
- REMOVING THE AMETHYST
It can be extracted in different quantities in several continents, but it varies according to its origin. Currently, Brazil is the best known area of Amethyst extraction; the first Brazilian Amethysts arrived in Europe in 1727. Uruguay has important deposits and its specimens show an intense violet hue. Other sources are in Madagascar, Kenya and Zambia.
- HISTORY OF THE AMETHYST
The origin of the Amethyst is narrated in the following legend: the god of wine, Dionysus, (according to the ancient Greeks) or Bacchus (according to the ancient Romans), was, so to speak, the “bad boy” of mythology. Although his divine mission was to end worries, Dionisio lived creating problems continuously, especially after drinking a certain amount of grape juice. The myth tells that on one occasion Dionysius, who, as usual, was drunk, having been ignored by a human being, decided to take revenge on the first person who crossed his path. At that moment Amethyst appeared, a beautiful innocent girl, a faithful disciple of Artemis. Dionisio released two of her hungry tigers to finish with her and poured a glass of wine to enjoy the show. At the cries of Amethyst the omnipresent Artemis came and transformed Amethyst’s body into a statue of Quartz, pure as its virtue. The spell saved the girl from danger and saved her a painful death, but it was an irreversible spell. Dionisio, after recovering from the excesses of wine, seized by remorse, wept tears in his wine glass, which accidentally spilled over the statue, creating in this way the gem we now call Amethyst.
Leonardo Da Vinci (1452-1519) wrote that Amethyst was able to eliminate bad thoughts and to sharpen intelligence. Pliny the Elder (23-79 AD) historical author of the “Historia Naturalis” (the first encyclopedia of the world) said that whoever engraved the name of the moon or the sun and suspended it on the neck of a baboon, would get a perfect amulet against witchcraft and an infallible talisman for those who came to place orders with kings. Long before the Roman emperors adopted the bright purple in the so-called “Toga Picta”, the Egyptian pharaohs, kings and queens adopted the purple as a powerful symbol of their sovereignty. From the seal of Cleopatra to the Amethyst necklace of Queen Charlotte, the Amethyst is and will always be linked to power. It is not surprising then that this gem was so loved in the middle Ages by the Catholic clergy. It was considered to represent celibacy and quickly became “Papal Stone”.
- CHARACTERISTICS OF THE AMETHYST
The most important factor for the evaluation of an Amethyst is its color: the more intense, the more expensive the gem. The most precious Amethyst has a shade that ranges from medium violet to dark violet and presents transparency in its pure violet, but that has both red and blue reflections, which are appreciated and highly desired. Amethyst crystals have few inclusions. Normally they do not have detectable inclusions with the naked eye at a distance of 15 cm. (gem eye-clean) As it is a precious stone very appreciated by carvers and jewelers can be found Amethyst carved in various forms, much more varied than normally happens with other precious stones. Regardless of its cut and size, color and brilliance are the criteria to consider in a quality issue.
- VARIETY OF AMETHYST
To differentiate the varieties of the Amethyst, next to the color, the origin of the gem is indicated, which in some specimens is synonymous with quality. The Brejinho Amethyst, for example, is extracted in Brazil from the Brejinho mine and is particularly appreciated for its purple reflections that appear on the surface of the gem and are of intense violet color. The Amethyst of Zambia, on the other hand, presents a clear and majestic purple with wonderful tones of blues and roses that illuminate the body of the crystal with each movement. The rare Amethyst of Uruguay fascinates for the perfection of its deep violet and is considered one of the best in the world today. Do not miss our interesting interview with the Amethyst expert, Carlos Espoo. Chakra Stone set is the best option for you.
The Green Amethyst Rio Grande (Prasiolita) has shades of intense green and is usually more precious than the traditional Green Amethysts. Both varieties are extracted in Brazil from different mines. The Green Amethyst is located in Uberaba, in the state of Minas Geares and the Green Amethyst Rio Grande is from the state of Rio Grande do Sul.
The following amethysts are classified according to their color: the Amethyst Patina owes its name to its own optical similarity with platinum, since it shows silvery nuances. The Brazilian specimens of Amethyst Lavender or Rose de France show instead a pastel lilac color as delicate as it is subtle. The Bicolor Amethyst is a set of Amethyst and White Quartz, formed by the fusion of crystals during strong modifications of environmental conditions. Another bicolor variety is the Amatrina (from the Anahi mine, in Bolivia) and which is composed of Citrine and Amethyst. This precious stone is present in the market of gems since 1980 although its history goes back to several centuries ago.
- CARE OF THE AMETHYST:
Some Amethyst stones tend to discolor if exposed to an extremely intense light source. Therefore it is to avoid cleaning treatments that use this type of methodology.