Jewelry Guide - Gemstones
- Mohs hardness rating: 7
- Found in Brazil, Burma, North America, Russia, Southwest Africa, Uruguay.
Amethyst - brilliantly sparkling and royal in its purple hue -- is the most
valued gemstone from the quartz family. Rich purple has always been a rare and noble
color. The crowns of Egyptian pharaohs were set with amethysts, and it was the favorite
gem of Christian leaders in the Middle Ages.
Amethyst’s name comes from Greek and means "not drunken." For centuries, it
was commonly believed that wearing an amethyst while drinking wine would keep the
wearer from getting drunk -- though it was never proven in any experiment. The amethyst
is also reputed to have the power to control evil thoughts, quicken wit, and bring
luck to gamblers. Roman wives firmly believed in wearing amethysts to keep their
husbands attentive and affectionate.