February Birthstones - Amethyst The Sobriety Stone And Stones Of RoyaltyAmethyst is the Traditional and Modern birthstone for people born during the month of February. Black Onyx or Moonstone along with most Purple Gemstones are considered the Alternative birthstone by various Gem Dealers, Jewelry Designers, and Jewelry Manufacturers. This beautiful purple stone is a favorite to many people who are not even born in the month of February. The serene tone of this gem has been coveted by many throughout the ages and adored by others. The purple sparkle of Amethyst makes a magnificent February Birthstones.
The Greeks believed that amethyst would prevent them from becoming drunk and the word amethystos means sober. It was linked with the Greek god of wine Bacchus and it was common for a drinking goblet to be festooned with Amethyst. Even today Amethyst is used to provide a reminder to those who struggle with an addiction to alcohol.
The legend says that Bacchus became angry and said if any mortal came near him they would be attached by tigers. Amethyst a mortal maiden was traveling to worship the Goddess Diana and Dianna knew she would have to walk near Bacchus to get to the temple. Diana turned her into a pillar of clear quartz so she would be protected from the tigers. Bacchus felt bad after seeing what had happened and he poured wine over Amethyst in homage and it stained her purple.
It is a symbol of protection in many circles and linking it to addiction, it is said to have the power to give the wearer to overcome any adversity. Traditionally it is as an engagement or anniversary ring because Amethyst is said to strengthen love between two people. It is a stone that will promote bravery and therefore was worn into battle frequently. Other legends say Amethyst will stop evil thoughts and it will aid hunters so they can capture the animals they are hunting or it will make a business person very and business savvy.
Even in the ninth century Amethyst has been found in royal crowns. Purple was a hard color to get because the dye was so expensive and hard to find. The color purple was reserved for royalty only and was incorporated into royal jewelry and breastplates that were part of a king's armor. There is a large Amethyst among the Crown Jewels of Britain.
The church has also enjoyed the beauty of Amethyst. It symbolically is a symbol of piety and spirituality It was found in crosses of the church and was used in ceremonies. Bishops often had the honor of wearing an Amethyst ring to show their station within the church.
Amethyst is a member of the quartz family and can be frequently found in Canada, Australia, Brazil, Zambia, Russia, Madagascar, Namibia, Sri Lanka and in some areas of the United States. The color runs from almost clear to a lavender color and then dark purple. The faceted stones are used in rings and polished cabochons are used as ornamentation in jewelry and other precious objects. It can be carved into shapes as well. One of the largest cut Amethyst pieces resides in the National History Museum in London and has 343 carats. It is also found in long crystals that are in prismatic form.
Birthstone jewelry in Amethyst can be found as rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings. It sets well in Bronze, as well as Yellow Gold or Sterling Silver. This purple stone is quite a beauty and will continue to be a favorite of those born in February as well as many others because of its pretty purple color.