Monday, 3 February 2014

Birthstone Unicorns - Amethyst

Well February is upon us and so it is time to offer my monthly birthstone post. A few facts and legends surrounding this pretty gem.


Amethyst is the traditional birthstone of those people born in the month of February. It is usually lilac or purple in colour and symbolizes stability, peace, courage, inner strength and a calm disposition.

Amethysts can also be known as the ‘sobriety stone.’ Believed to prevent drunkenness and other forms of addiction! However, you may prefer to use to treat headaches, insomnia, arthritis or for general pain relief.


"The February born shall find
Sincerity and peace of mind,
Freedom from passion and from care,
If they, the amethyst will wear."

(taken from the Gregorian Poem - author unknown)

In ancient times a true purple dye was costly and quite rare (see I always knew I had expensive tastes!) it is a colour often reserved for royalty and many crowns have amethysts on them. Through history they have been found everywhere from the tombs of Egyptian Pharaohs to soldiers graves in Europe.

The word amethyst comes from the Greek 'amethystos' meaning not drunken. It was sacred to the God of wine and overindulgence, Dionysus. According to Greek mythology Amethyst was a young virgin who upset Dionysus when he became drunk on red wine. Amethyst sought the help of the Goddess Diana who turned the young girl into a white, shimming stone. Feeling remorse for his actions Dionysus's tears fell into his goblet of red wine, it overturned, spilling the red wine over the white rock and saturating it until it became purple.

In ancient times the amethyst has been more prized than sapphires and rubies

Amethysts have been used to adorn the rings of Bishops.

Saint Valentine was thought to wear a ring set with an amethyst in the shape of cupid.

In Medieval times soldiers often wore purple as they went into battle.They considered the amethyst an aid to healing in case of injury.

In the Chinese philosophy  of Feng Shui amethysts enhance the wealth corner, focusing on giving and receiving of material wealth.

If you or a loved one is celebrating this month, have a very Happy Birthday!


21 comments:

  1. I've always loved amethyst. And it can help with insomnia, huh? As an insomniac, I think I'll have to remember that! :P

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  2. Thanks for enlightening us about your birthstone the amethyst.
    The insomnia part intrigued me as I never get a full nights sleep and think about all the problems going on.
    Have a good week.

    Yvonne.

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    1. I know what you mean, your mind can keep replaying conversations and events can't it?

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  3. So red wine colored the stone? Interesting!

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  4. God, every time you put up one of these posts I always feel so sorry for all the people from olden times who hoped they could heal gaping wounds and crippled bones with gemstones. It's tragic (and a little bit funny!)

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    1. Haha I know what you mean. Makes you wonder how they first came up with some of the ideas!

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  5. My son is February born. There is a purple colored sapphire which was mistakenly called an oriental amethyst. It was always prized. Now, it's called a sapphire. Many of the crown amethyst were "oriental" amethyst or sapphires. No matter which one you choose, they are beautiful.

    Sia McKye Over Coffee

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    1. I agree they are all beautiful. Happy Birthday to your son.

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  6. I love love love amethyst. Didn't know this about the gem. I particularly love the energy of them. Yes, I do feel energy from certain stones.

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    1. Amethyst is one of my favourites too! Glad you learnt something new today.

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  7. In the shape of Cupid huh? Did it have a diaper on it lol

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    1. Now that's one I don't know the answer to, Pat!

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  8. An interesting post that I enjoyed reading.

    Thank you. Love love, Andrew. Bye.

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  9. Amethyst is one of my favourite gems. Fascinating facts surrounding it. I love getting a history lesson from you!

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  10. Wait, wait, I know a few things about purple! The dye was created in Tyre, which was on the coast and always smelled ATROCIOUS because they were boiling snails. *shudders*

    I think the gem's history is much more...pleasing. =) Love it!

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  11. Hi Suzanne,

    As per usual, you have written a comprehensive gem of a story. I was certainly not drunken when I read this. My slightly famous playwrite brother Andrew is born in February.

    Gary :)

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  12. I loved all that you shared! It is amazing the reflections behind the gems. Fascinating info..I am happy I stopped by!

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  13. I love amethyst :) I had a silver necklace with an amethyst gem in the middle that I wear whenever I do Reiki; and have a solid gem that I like to hold when relaxing and meditating :)
    Suzanne @ Suzannes Tribe
    xx

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  14. Hi Suzanne ... brothers, grandmother, uncle, cousins, best friend at school ... they all pop up now - there's purple everywhere!

    Cheers Hilary

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