Peridot, occasionally referred to as chrysolite, is gemstone quality olivine. Its lovely green hue has been admired around the world for centuries, loved by everyone from the ancient Romans to Cleopatra herself! Here are some interesting facts about this gorgeous green stone.
- Peridot has been the official birthstone for August since 1912.
- Peridot is one of the few gemstones that only comes in one color which is green! It can range anywhere from a light lime to a deep olive. The specific shade of green will change depending on the amount of iron in the stone.
- The name peridot is a French word derived from the Arabic word "faridat" meaning gem.
- Peridot rates at a 6.5-7 on the Mohs Hardness Scale. It is best suited for jewellery that will not be bumped frequently as it can scratch or chip easily.
- Peridot is like a diamond in the fact that it is formed within the Earth in the upped mantle, anywhere from 20 to 55 miles deep! The stones are brought to the surface by tectonic or volcanic activity.
- In Hawaiian culture peridot is said to symbolize the tears of Pele, the Goddess of fire and Volcanoes. Due to volcanic activity on the Hawaiian islands, peridot can sometimes be found along the beaches!
- Peridot has been found inside meteorites, meaning it is one of the few stones that have been discovered to exist outside of our solar system!
- Peridot is considered to be the national gemstone of Egypt and in ancient times was often referred to as the “gem of the sun”.
- Ancient Romans were also very fond of peridot, often referring to it as the “emerald of the evening”.
- Peridot was often confused with emerald in ancient times. For centuries, people believed the impressive 200 carat gems adorning the shrine of the Three Holy Kings in Germany’s Cologne Cathedral were emeralds, but they are in fact peridots!
- Peridot was believed to bring good luck and inner strength to its wearer, as well as having the ability to ward off evil spirits!
Looking to add some lovely peridot jewellery to your collection? Take a look at our selection on 100 Ways!