August Birthstones - Peridot

 Modern – Peridot   Traditional – Sardonyx   Mystical - Diamond

Raw and faceted peridot

Peridot is a very intriguing transparent yellowish-green gem variety of the mineral forsterite olivine. It is a magnesium/iron silicate crystal formed in the igneous environment deep inside the mantle of the earth and is then brought to the surface with volcanic activity. Some also came to the earth as remnants of our solar system's birth in meteorites, though those are rare. The intensity of green in each gem depends on the amount of iron. The best-colored peridot has an iron percentage of less than 15% and includes nickel and chromium as trace elements.

peridot crystal

Peridot is an ancient gemstone that was used in jewelry as far back as the time of the Egyptian pharaohs.  One of the only ancient sources of peridot came from a large mine located on St John's Island in the Red Sea off Egypt. That site is now depleted and under the Red Sea. The picture below is of a beautiful gem crystal from that location.

peridot crystal from St. John's Island

The Ancient Greeks called this island Topazios, which led to the green gem mined there being called topaz. The French were the first to call the gem peridot (meaning unclear) back in the 18th century.

Early miners looked for peridot at night because they believed that light from the moon made the crystals easier to find, giving it the name "night emerald". After marking the locations of the crystals they came back in the daylight to dig them up.  

Today most peridot is mined in Arizona and higher quality gems coming from Pakistan and surrounding areas.

Peridot crystal from Pakistan

Esoteric Attributes:

Considered a tonic for the whole body and protects the wearer from negativity, envy, gossip and people who would deceive you.

Associated with stress reduction and relaxation

Beneficial for overcoming fear, nervous anxiety, depression

Releases jealousies, resentment and spite in order to move forward.

Helps dissipate negative patterns that play over and over, keeping one from realizing they are deserving of success.

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