JewelStruck Blog

GEMS February – Mythology & History behind Amethsyt

by JewelStruck on Feb.24, 2010, under GEMS

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With Gemstone Each Month Series (GEMS) – February, we would be discussing this time mythology and historical references of Amethyst, the birthstone of February. Only a few days are left for this month to end and also this series on Amethyst, so if you have anything interesting to share or showcase related to Amethyst do comment or email us at info@jewelstruck.com. The beautiful wire wrapped amethyst necklace featured below is made by Pippi Konstanski.

Wire wrapped Amethyst Necklace

Wire wrapped Amethyst Necklace

Continuing with the History of Amethyst, up to 18th century amethyst was included in the cardinal (most valuable) gemstones along with diamond, sapphire, ruby, and emerald. However since the discovery of extensive deposits in locations such as Brazil it has lost most of its value.

Historical References

  • It was largely used for gemstone engravings by the ancient Egyptians, also known as intaglio engraved gems.
  • Medieval European soldiers wore amethyst amulets as protection in battle.
  • Beads of amethyst were found in Anglo-Saxon graves in England, from early 5th century AD.
  • A huge geode, or “amethyst-grotto”, from near Santa Cruz in southern Brazil was exhibited at the Düsseldorf, Germany Exhibition of 1902.

Mythology
The Greeks believed amethyst gems could prevent intoxication. Amethyst was considered to be a strong antidote against drunkenness, which is why wine goblets were often carved from it. There are many stories behind the purple colour of Amethyst featuring Dionysus, the god of intoxication and maiden named Amethystos.

So this was all we explored on Amethyst, we will be back with more on it sooner.

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