Welcome to Malak Jewelers' Monday Message! Each Monday we will post an informational blog post. Check in each week to learn more about the history of jewelry, rare gemstones, the diamond industry, and more!
This week, learn all about August's playful birthstone, the peridot!
All images in this article are taken from Malak Jewelers' own stock of stunning peridot jewelry!
Last month, we learned about July's ruby. Unlike July, however, August has more than one birthstone. August actually has three different stones! The traditional birthstone for August was sardonyx, a chalcedony variety with brown and white bands. A modern alternative birthstone for August is the spinel, which comes in a wide variety of colors. However, spinel is fairly unknown, and historically has been viewed as less valuable (though it's coming into its own nowadays!).
By far the most famous stone for August is the modern peridot. Peridot was chosen by the American National Association of Jewelers when they decided to create a new list of birthstones in 1912. The jewelers were choosing all transparent stones for their new list, and the stunning color of peridot made it an easy choice for inclusion.
Peridot is a variety of gem-quality olivine. It is a vivid, bright green in color, which comes from iron deposits in the mineral. It is a good choice for jewelry because of its durability and intense coloration. The mineral that makes up peridot, olivine, is a major component of the Earth's crust, so peridot is comparatively abundant.
Peridots are some of the oldest stones used in jewelry. In fact, peridots have been mined in Zabargad, an island in the Red Sea, since ancient Egypt! Zabargad continues to produce lovely peridots to this day. Other sources of peridot exist. Myanmar has the only deposits of large peridot. Countries all over the world produce peridots, from Mexico to Norway. Even the United States has several areas where peridots are mined!
By far the coolest thing about peridots, though, is that some peridots come from space! That's right, there are extraterrestrial peridots. Some meteorites contain peridot crystals that were formed in stars. These gems have been found and, though extremely rare, some have even been made into jewelry!
Here comes the fun stuff! Birthstones are, by nature, a mystical thing. The connection between the month of your birth and a special gemstone means that there's almost something magical about them, like a talisman. So it's important to know the lore behind your birthstone!
Peridot has some cool stories behind it. Because peridots can be found in volcanic rock in Hawaii, they were considered to be the tears of the volcano goddess Pele. Religious connections abound; in Egypt, peridots were viewed as symbols of youthfulness and vitality, connecting them to Isis. Priests of Isis would drink from peridot chalices to honor her. Egyptians also viewed peridots as the "gem of the sun" because of their bright coloration.
In Christian theology, peridots are connected to Old Testament stories. Famously, Aaron wore a peridot into battle. Because of this connection, only the highest priests could wear peridots. They were seen as symbols of purity.
Peridots have a lot of lucky associations with them. They are believed to protect the wearer from nightmares. The vibrant green color of peridots mean that people tend to connect them with life and exuberance. They are considered good stones for active people. They are also believed to attract wealth, a common association with green gemstones.
Malak Jewelers has a large selection of beautiful peridot jewelry to choose from! If you're looking for the perfect gift for the vibrant August baby in your life, look no further!
Malak Jewelers is Charlotte, North Carolina’s premier direct diamond importer, supplier of loose diamonds, and custom design jewelry. When you buy from Malak you receive 100 Day Price Protection and a Lifetime Upgrade Promise. Be sure to check out our wide variety of diamond engagement rings both in our online catalogue and at our store in Charlotte, North Carolina's Arboretum Shopping Center.