The history of Peridot, August’s Birthstone
One of the most glamorous women in history, Cleopatra, collected August’s birthstone, Peridot.
Interestingly, Ancient Egyptians called Peridot the ‘Gem of the sun”. They believed it could harness the power of nature and offer protection from the shadows of the night. Remember being terrified of the pile of laundry when the lights went off? We’ve all been there.
Ancient Egyptians also thought Peridot opened portals of communication between mortals and the gods. You can find goblets and trinkets encrusted with Peridot dating back to then.
Peridot is deceptively good value for money, and we wanted to share its rich origins with you. They are affordable and abundant, but they’re not lacking in luxury by any means.
In fact, they’re so captivating they were confused with emeralds throughout history, particularly medieval times.
Peridot in The Shrine of the Three Kings
The Shrine of the Three Kings is a cathedral in Germany. It was completed in 1880 and took 632 years to build. Despite being bombed numerous times during World War II it survived the attacks and has been restored to perfection today.
Stories say it holds the remains of the three wise men from the bible. The shrine is sprinkled with peridots, and mistakenly so, as people thought they were sprinkling on emeralds at the time.
Peridot on Snake Island
Have you ever heard of Snake Island? It’s a volcanic Egyptian Island with prized Peridot deposits, but there’s a catch. It’s really dangerous. People even called it The Island of Death because it’s such a hazardous place.
Despite picking up all these nicknames, the island is called Zabargad Island. Peridot from here is really sought-after and considered the finest cut. We read about Zabargad Island on the GIA blog.
Anatomy of Peridot:
Mineral mother: Olivine
Chemical Disposition: Magnesium and iron
Deposit locations: Arizona, Brazil, Myanmar, Africa, China, Pakistan, and Zabargad
We have a penchant for gemstones, as you might have noticed in our birthstone blogs. We share the same love for precious stones as the Ancient Egyptians did too. These are a few of the Peridots we are most proud of at the moment:
Have you got some August Birthstone jewellery you cherish? Please share it with us on social. You can find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.