Amethyst the Birthstone for February
Amethyst the birthstone for February, is most recognized for its color of a rich violet-purple. It has also long since been considered a spiritual gemstone and is believed to calm fears and enhance thoughts of spirituality.
However, it is a quartz gemstone which also comes in a pale green. The green amethyst is often referred to as Prasiolite, but can also be referred to as vermarine, mint quartz, green amethyst, lime citrine, and green quartz
According to legend St. Valentine wore an amethyst ring carved in the likeness of Cupid. Given the gemstones reputation for calming passions, this seems a bit of a tall story!
Although in Medieval times, chaste love was highly considered true love, so there may be some symbolism there after all.
Amethyst and Royalty
The most recognized color of a rich violet-purple has long since been associated with royalty. Amethyst gems can be found in crown jewels, the purple color is also frequently used in robes and ceremonial clothing.
The crown below, St. Edwards Crown is a good example, and has been used since the 13th century at the coronation of English and British monarchs. This is a copy made for Charles II in 1661.
The original was a relic and kept in Westminster Abbey, the burial place of it’s namesake Edward the Confessor. During the English civil war in the 1600’s, Parliament abolished the Monarchy and the original crown disappeared.
After 1689 the crown was not used for around 200 years, until1911 when the tradition was revived by George V who was King from May 1910 until his death in 1936, and has been used ever since both for George VI and our reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth II.
More information and pictures of the Royal Crown Jewels can be found here https://www.hrp.org.uk/tower-of-london/history-and-stories/the-crown-jewels/#gs.gUseV1U.
Amethyst Symbolism and Spirituality
Amethyst also has religious connotations. It could have been the amethyst’s association with calming that led early Christians to associate the gemstone with Christ. Some went so far as to believe that the colors alluded to the suffering and wounds of Christ. The purple color represented purity of spirit.
The ancient Egyptians included amethyst in amulets for protection against harm and also as a form of prayer.
Amethyst Healing Power
In traditional Chinese medicine, amethyst is prescribed for stomach pains and bad dreams. Amethyst has been favored as an ages-old cure for centuries.
It is said that if you rub a moistened amethyst on a spots, it cures them! I do not attest to having tried this so please do not take my word for it.