August's primary birthstone is peridot, a light lime to a deep olive-green gemstone that symbolizes good fortune.
August often represents the strongest and most reliable month. The weather is warm, the trees are healthy, the crops are at their peak, and the world is comfortable and happy.
Its primary birthstone, peridot, is representative of this strength. It's light green color is a perfect pairing with the long evenings of August and the fun of sitting outside and contemplating the world.
The mysterious "alien": peridot
Peridot is born out of olivine, a common mineral sourced from volcanoes.
All peridot comes from either deep in the Earth's mantle or from pallasite meteorites. First found in meteorites that have fallen to Earth, this is one of the few gems that has been found in an extraterrestrial fashion. This "alien" has been found on Mars and the moon as well!
While peridot from meteorites is very rare, peridot from underground is plentiful, even on American soil—namely in Arizona's San Carlos Reservation, which supplies an estimated 80-95% of the world's peridot.
Outside of the United States, peridot is sourced from China, Pakistan, Myanmar, and Brazil. The stone has also been found in Australia, Mexico, Norway, Kenya, and Sri Lanka.
Peridot has a fascinating, mythological history, and ancient records show that peridot has been mined as early as 1500 B.C. Peridot may originate from the Greek word peridona, which means "giving plenty."
In ancient Hawaiian times, peridot crystals were thought to be the tears of Pele, the volcano goddess. Ancient Greeks and Romans used peridot in their rings, pendants and other jewelry, believing it bestowed nobility.
Egyptians in that era called it the "gem of the sun" and believed it could instill confidence and power. They also thought that the stone was the most powerful when set in gold.
Peridot has a history of being confused with emerald, and many historians claim that Cleopatra's famed emerald collection included peridot gems.
Thanks to these magical myths, peridot has come to symbolize strength, opportunity, peace and prosperity, making August babies quite lucky and in a good, protective company.
The benefits of the "evening emerald"
Peridot's vivid color is ideal for exquisite gemstone jewelry and makes a perfect gift choice.
Connecting with volcanoes for centuries, peridot often represents a person who has a similar volcanic personality. Those born in August often overwhelm those around them with affection and an outpouring of emotion.
The optimistically green peridot is said to bring joy, health, and abundance, and to encourage positive emotional states. It's also a stone that attracts wealth and prosperity.
This good-natured green tone is very appropriate because peridot represents compassion and holds plenty of friendly energy. This birthstone can be used to fight depression. It promotes all the processes of growth, renewal, rebirth, and rejuvenation.
This healing stone prevents jealousy and anger in relationships, which makes it a harmonious gem. It's also commonly associated with happiness and courage.
On a physical level, it stimulates the elimination of toxins from the body. It also helps the bloodstream, heart, and lungs. Peridot is believed to help heal ulcers and digestive problems. This stone is known to be very beneficial for the nails, skin, and hair.
Many gemstones get their range of colors from trace impurities and outside elements, but not peridot. Its vibrant, light green color comes from the iron found in olivine.
These subtle shades stroll between yellow-green and brownish-green, depending on the amount of iron. No reds, blues, or other primary colors here!
Peridot's value is measured using the usual 4Cs of gem quality, especially color. The highest quality peridots are pure green color, absent of any brown or yellow. Smaller stone sizes are the most affordable, with flawless 5+ carat peridots being the rarest and most expensive.
Peridot, sometimes referred to as the "evening emerald," comes in at around 6.5 to 7 on the Mohs hardness scale and is quite durable in its finished form, making it a very wearable, everyday jewelry option. Of course, this doesn't mean it won't scratch if you aren't careful. To clean your peridot jewelry, opt for mild soap and warm water.
If you're looking for a gift for a green-loving Leo (August 1st to 22nd) or Virgo (August 23rd to 31st) in your life, peridot gemstone jewelry is a perfect choice and comes in at more affordable prices than emeralds. If peridot is good enough for Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, it's good enough for us!