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August Birthstone

The Lime Green Peridot - "The Gem of the Sun"

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What is The Birthstone of August?

Dubbed by the Ancient Egyptians “The Gem of the Sun”, August’s birthstone is a truly rare and ancient stone, found in volcanic lava or in fallen meteorites. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the light lime-colored Peridot gem is associated with light and cosmic extra-terrestrial powers.

Though Peridot has just one color (while other gems might have rarer varieties and shades), its hues can range from a radiant yellow, through bright green to light brown. But perhaps the most captivating aspect about the Peridot is its fascinating history and enchanting sparkle.

Gold Peridot and Diamonds Ring
Peridot and Diamonds Ring

Peridot Gemstone Rings - Beautiful Gifts for August Kids

Quick Facts on August's Birthstones

August Birthstone Facts

Birthstone of August Peridot
Birthstone Color Olive Green, Yellowish Green and Yellow
Mohs Scale 6.5-7
Chemical Formula (Mg,Fe)₂SiO₄
Origin China, Myanmar, Vietnam, Pakistan, Tanzania, United States & Sardinia (Italy)
Interesting Fact Named as the “gem of the sun” by the Egyptians

The Story of Peridot

The Peridot stone belongs to the elite branch of gems which are not formed in the crust of the earth. Like the diamond, the lime-green stone is actually created much deeper. A genuine Peridot is formed in magma and then resurfaces during a volcanic activity. Though the stone was first found thousands of years ago in Hawaii, and is thus deeply connected with Hawaiian culture and mythology, it is also the most important gem in Egyptian culture. It is the country’s national gem and was mostly found on the island of Topazos, currently known as St. John’s Island in the Egyptian Red Sea.

Peridot - August Birthstone Peridot
Peridot Mantle Peridot Mantle (credit: James St. John)

It is no coincidence that the name of the stone derives from the Arabic word “Faridat”, which literally means “gem”. However, some believe that the name was originated by the Ancient Greeks and has to do with the word “Peridona”, which means “giving in abundance”. The latter source corresponds with common belief that the stone grants affluence, success, and generally good luck.

Since Peridot was believed to strengthen and increase positive characteristics, it was often embedded on the Crusaders’ armours, who had brought the gems back with them from their Mediterranean Crusades. Yet another example, were goblets made from the stone from which people would drink different healing potions, believing it would enhance the medicine’s impact. However, it wasn’t until the Victorian and Edwarian Era when the stone truly gained its popularity. The reason for this was that King Edward had declared it his favorite stone, linking it with confidence, regality and power.

Myths and Legends

Myths Around August Birthstone - Peridot Myths Around August Birthstone - Peridot

The bright color has sparked a great number of legends, most of which are associated with harmony and inner peace. Which is why during the middle ages, the gem was set in different clothing pieces to ward off nightmares, especially in items colored gold. They were also used to decorate cathedrals and church robes, believed to instill God’s spirit of oneness.

But prior to its arrival and entrance into Western culture, Peridot was already a pretty spiritually significant gem in Hawaiian mythology. In Ancient Hawaii, prayers would praise Pele, the goddess of the volcano and would gather the stones after every eruption, trusting they were the goddess’ tears of joy. Being a fickle goddess, Pele both unleashes her wrath with lava, but then repays the people with glistening drops of sun. This is why Peridot is also characterized as a source of healing and forgiveness.

Whether you’re seeking for peace, a boost of self-esteem or a gorgeous piece of glimmering jewelry - the August birthstone is the hottest way to go, breathing fire from the very heart of Mother Nature.