The peridot, or chrysolite, gemstone is part of the olivine family and is rich in magnesium. However, this green gemstone gets its gorgeous green color from the iron that it contains.
The peridot birthstone for the month of August is almost poetic, as it comes with a change of season as well as a chance to celebrate life. It’s also the gemstone to give a loved one as a 16-year anniversary gift.
Having said all of this, there’s a lot more to the peridot stone than meets the eye. Keep reading to find out more!
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What is a Peridot?
This beautiful gem receives its name from the French word for gold, péridot. However, it is also said to have gotten its name from the Arabic word for gem, faridat.
The gem forms part of the olivine family and is sourced from the peridotite rock. The peridot gemstone is found in meteorites, lava and within the earth’s mantle. This implies that some of these peridot stones are ancient, with some saying that they are a by-product of the birth of our solar system.
Adding to the mysterious appeal of this gemstone is that a robotic space probe brought back comet dust that had particles of peridot in it.
This stone even dates back to ancient Egypt to around 300 BC and was mined on an island called Zabargad on the Red Sea. They referred to the stone as the gem of the sun as a result of the beautiful yellowish-green hues. These stones were used to carve talismans. They were also collected as part of the Pharaoh’s treasury.
The ancient Romans referred to this stone as the evening emerald due to the green coloring that remains constant regardless of the lighting. Some of these stones are still on display in some of the world’s most famous museums.
What is the Meaning of the Peridot Gemstone?
The peridot birthstone is August’s official birthstone, as well as that of the 16th wedding anniversary. In addition to being symbolic of these two milestones, the peridot crystals bring the wearer peace, rest, and health by promoting strength and balance. It’s also believed to boost your mood and improve creativity.
In addition to these properties, the peridot has a metaphysical meaning. The stone has detoxifying properties as it stimulates the metabolism and liver. It can improve gallbladder and liver function as well as treat skin conditions and increase recovery time.
Given the benefits to the liver and gallbladder, it is easy to see why many believe that the stone can treat digestive issues, allergies, weight management and improve nutrient absorption.
Peridot also channels abundance and love, and emits a positive energy.
The Properties of Peridot
This gemstone is one of the few to only be found in one color. It’s a variety of olivine and is made of magnesium and iron, the latter of which gives the stone its signature olive green color.
The peridot stone is found all over the world, although the best gem quality stones come from Egypt or Myanmar – although Pakistan has recently begun to uncover some impressive specimens too.
In Arizona in the U.S.A., there is an abundance of the peridot. Unfortunately, these stones are of a more inferior quality. This does, however, make them more accessible and affordable, allowing more people the opportunity to wear the beautiful yellow-green peridot gem.
How Expensive is Peridot?
As with any gemstone, the price will differ based on the quality of the stone. For an average one-carat stone, you are looking at between $50 and $80 USD a piece. The more impressive, high-quality peridot stones range between $400 and $450 USD for a one-carat stone. Of course, the bigger you go, the more expensive the stone will become.
The biggest – and most expensive – peridot comes from Zebirget, Egypt. It is 311.78 carats and weighs 62.35 grams. It’s now on display in the Smithsonian Museum in the USA. Another exquisite piece is the 192.75-carat peridot that belongs to the Russian Diamond Treasury.
Is Peridot a Rare Gem?
While the peridot gem is beautiful, it’s unfortunately not rare. Due to their global distribution, peridots get mined in large quantities each year. The stone forms deep within the earth’s crust and is pushed to the surface after volcanic eruptions. They are mined in regions that include Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Burma, Vietnam, Pakistan, China, and the United States.
Some peridot stones come to us from meteorites and comets and are known as extra-terrestrial peridots. These peridot stones are rare and are not easily sourced.
What Colour is Peridot?
The peridot gemstone is known for its greenish-yellow coloring and ranges from a solid green to green with hints of brown or yellow. Low-quality stones tend to be brownish while high-quality stones – more than 10 carats – have the finest colors which are green with no traces of yellow or brown.
This stone is also the only gemstone to come in one color, with the intensity of the color determined by the iron content. Peridots with less iron are a darker shade of green and the most valuable. These gems are usually found in Myanmar and Pakistan.
One of the unique properties of this gem is that the light will not alter the radiant green color. This has led to the gem being referred to as “gem of the sun” or “emerald of the evening”. In ancient Egypt, these gems were often mined at night as they were easy to find even in dark conditions.
The Peridot is a Ray of Sunshine
In ancient times, many people thought that the peridot crystals contained sun rays, giving off a beautiful color. While we know that this isn’t true, this beautiful gem is truly exquisite and will add color to any piece of jewelry.