Amethyst comes from the Greek word "amethystos," meaning sober.
Amethyst is the purple variety of the mineral quartz Amethyst does not come in any other variety of colors like many gemstones do, but it does come in several different shades of purple.
Amethysts have a Mohs’ hardness of 7, which is about the same as a garnet or 1/15 as hard as a diamond.
The early Greeks believed that amethyst would protect the wearer from the effects of drunkenness when consuming wine. In ancient Rome amethyst was crushed and added to wine to prevent drunkenness. Known as the sobriety stone as it was also believed to assist with healing from additions and compulsive behaviors.
The intense violet hue of Amethyst appealed to early monarchs, perhaps because they often wore this color. Purple dye was scarce and expensive at one time, and so it was reserved for the garments of kings and queens.
Amethyst is also symbolic of spirituality and piety. It has been used to ornament crosses used in religious ceremony, and worn in rings and on rosaries by bishops and priests.
When given as a gift Amethyst is symbolic of protection and the ability to overcome difficulty. It is also believed strengthen the bond in a love relationship, so it is an ideal anniversary, engagement or even a valentine’s day gem stone gift.
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