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February Birth Stones - Amethyst -The Sobriety Stone and Gemstone of Royals
If you have a February birthday, your birthstone is Amethyst.. Amethyst is a fashionable gemstone for even those folks that don't have February birthdays. This remarkable jewel has been loved over history for its serene and calming color. The purple glitter of Amethyst makes a splendid February Birth Stone.
In ancient Greece, Amethyst was thought to thwart drunkenness and is derived from the word "amethystos," which means sober. It was associated with the Greek god of wine Bacchus and it was customary for a drinking chalice to be ornamented with Amethyst. Even these days Amethyst is used to present a reminder to those who struggle with an compulsion to alcohol.
The myth says that Bacchus became enraged and said if any human came close to him they would be attacked by tigers. Amethyst, a mortal maiden was traveling to venerate the Goddess Diana and Dianna knew she would have to walk near Bacchus to get to the shrine. Diana turned her into a column of clear quartz so she would be protected from the tigers. After observing what happened to Amethyst, Baccus felt awful and poured wine over her in reverence, which then stained her purple.
Amethyst is a emblem of protection in many circles linking it to addiction. It is said to bestow the wearer the might to beat any difficulty. Over the ages, Amethyst is said to make stronger love between two people, so it is frequently given as an anniversary or engagement ring. It was generally worn by warriors into battle in that it was alleged to promote heroism.
Amethyst was found in royal crowns as early as the ninth century. Expensive and tricky to find, the shade of purple was a hard shade to acquire. Its rarity kept it mostly to royals and was incorporated in many crowns, breastplates, and body armor. The Crown Jewels of Britain commonly integrated Amethyst as a focal gem. Amethyst was also widely used in church vestments, cups, and jewelry. Amethyst emblematically is a symbol of piousness and spirituality. It was found in crosses of the church and was used in ceremonies. Bishops regularly had the honor of wearing an Amethyst ring to illustrate their rank within the church.
Amethyst is found in rocks and is a member of the quartz family. It is usually found in the United States, and can be regularly found in Sri Lanka, Namibia, Madagascar, Russia, Zambia, Brazil, Australia, and Canada. The color runs from nearly clear to a lavender color and then dark purple. Faceted Amethyst and highly polished cabochons are widely used as embellishment in jewelry and other precious objects. The National History Museum in London is the home of one of the largest Amethyst specimens ever found, weighing in at 343 carats.
Rings, necklaces, bracelets, and earrings set with Amethyst makes a great present for folks born in the month of February. It sets well in white gold as well as yellow gold or platinum. This purple gemstone is quite a beauty and will continue to be a choice of those born in February as well as many others because of its beautiful purple color.
Origins of Blue Topaz Gemstones
Blue Topaz can be found in sky blue, greenish blue, or an "electric" blue. Whatever it's color, Blue Topaz is a popular gemstone and not only makes beautiful December birthstone jewelry, but also has a variety of interesting legends.
Like most topazes, which are quartz crystals, Blue Topaz starts out as a nearly clear or a lightly tinted shade of crystal. The colorless crystal is then irradiated to bring out a blue color, and finally heat treated to make the color stable. The hue of blue depends on the type of radiation exposed to the quartz crystals.
Exposing the topaz crystals to neutrons in a nuclear accelerator transforms the color into a deep bluish-green or bluish-gray color commonly referred to as London Blue Topaz. Sky Blue Topaz (the most common color of Blue Topaz) is produced by exposing the quartz crystals to electrons in a linear accelerator. To produce Swiss Blue or Electric Blue Topaz, the quartz is bathed in a combination of both kinds of radiation. After a one year cooling off period, the radiation levels are safe enough to allow the Topaz to be worn by consumers.
Most blue topaz has a modest value, so there's little incentive for gemologists to create synthetic versions of the gem. By coating quartz crystals with titanium particles, a rainbow of colors is produce that is commonly referred to as Mystic Topaz. Since this effect is produced by a thin coating of titanium, Mystic Blue Topaz is extremely fragile and must be handled with the greatest of care.
Although Blue Topaz has a very unusual manufacturing technique, it is an astonishing gem since it's highly refractive and shines beautifully when polished. With a score of 8 on Moh's Scale of gemstone hardness, Blue Topaz finds its way into many attractive pieces of jewelry.
Blue Topaz has many mystical and New Age beliefs surrounding it as does all forms of topaz: it's said to promoted glandular health, regulates heart rhythm, and reduces inflammations such as arthritis. On the other hand, the color of Blue Topaz is said to aid in meditation, discernment, and forgiveness. Its calm blue quality is said to help its wearers release their anger, especially from old hurts, fostering forgiveness and reconciliation that leads to a calmer, fuller life.
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The Healing Properties of Citrine
Commonly referred to as the "gemstone of accomplishment," Citrine, the birthstone for November, endures a case of false identity that causes gem aficionados to overlook its beauty and benefits. Natural Citrine's color can range from a pale lemon yellow to a rich golden brown. After Citrine is faceted into a gemstone, it is practically impossible to distinguish it visually from the more valuable Yellow Topaz.This has led unscrupulous dealers to substitute Citrine for Yellow Topaz, much to the chagrin of bilked customers when they discover the truth, usually at resale.
Amethyst or Smoky Quartz crystals are heat treated to activate ferric impurities, producing commercial grade Citrine and giving Citrine its golden-yellow color. Natural Citrines are usually pale in color, while Citrines produced by heating Amethyst or Smoky Quartz crystals tend to have a more reddish or orange cast to them. Brazil produces most of the world's gem-grade Citrine. For those born in November, Citrine is your birthstone.
Known as the "gemstone of achievement," Citrine promotes an abundance of prosperity and wealth. It's sometimes nicknamed "merchant's stone" because superstitious merchants of times past put Citrine in their cashboxes to bring in money. Citrine purportedly also brings success in other unanticipated ways. Citrine is also thought to encourage kindness by guiding those who profit from its powers to spread their wealth with others.
By wearing Citrine, it is thought that your confidence, mental clarity, and will power can be enhanced. For people that experience depression or low self-esteem, New Age healers usually recommend Citrine crystals. Citrine is thought to deflect and dissipate all kinds of negative energies, generating stability in thought and emotion. It's also believed to reduce self-doubt and self-destructive tendencies, instead fostering happiness and good cheer in those who wear it.
If you suffer from digestive problems, Citrine crystals are also believed to help the immune and endocrine systems. It's believed to play a role in eliminating toxins from the body and in overcoming various addictions. Whether chosen for its gleaming beauty or alleged psychic benefits, Citrine brings a sunny gleam and good fortune to its wearers.