Thursday, February 5, 2015

Amethyst - Meet the Rock

February's birthstone, amethyst, is purple quartz.
Big gorgeous hunk of amethyst Kay collected from the Reel Mine about 20 years ago - see more of it by clicking here

Its name comes from a Greek phrase that means, literally, "not drunk." The ancient Greeks named it that because they believed that it prevented people from getting drunk, or at least from feeling the effects of alcohol over-consumption. They not only wore lots of amethysts, they carved cups and bowls and goblets out of the stuff as drinking vessels for alcohol.  Hardcore drinkers, those ancient Greeks.

ancient Greek drinking vessel carved of amethyst

The carved amethyst bowl on the left can be seen if you click here to visit the delightful Moonlover's Celestial Emporium.  The one on the right can be seen if you click here, and do be sure to browse while you're in Healing Crystal Light.  Might not keep you from getting tipsy, but oh, how splendid to have one of them to use!

Amethyst is hard enough to make lovely jewelry and carved ornamental objects.  The ancient Egyptians used it for jewelry, too.

That's an ancient Roman intaglio carved amethyst on the left - or what's left of it, anyway.  

I love the look of carved amethyst. We have a lovely vintage necklace, pictured below, that has carved amethyst beads and freshwater pearls = totally dreamy combination from the 1950s.  You can see more views of it and get more details about it by clicking here.

1950s carved amethysts & freshwater pearls necklace
Amethyst comes in all shades of purple, from the palest pink violet to deep deep purple.  Generally speaking, the deeper the purple, the more valuable the stone.  

Kay's pretty sure we're going to find amethysts on our property eventually, because we certainly have plenty of quartz, and we have found the other minerals, like manganese and iron oxide, necessary to produce amethyst and smoky amethyst.  So we'll keep digging, y'all.

Visit us on etsy at Gypsum Moon Vintage for vintage and antique items for your home, kitchen, office, and yard, at Gypsum Moon Rocks for rocks and crystals, sterling silver gemstone jewelry, lapidary, craft, and jewelry supplies, and at Gypsum Moon Style for vintage and upcycled clothing, jewelry. and accessories for women and men.

Bright blessings,
CJ & Kay

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