What is an amethyst?
AMETHYST QUICK GUIDE
- Reddish Purple
- Deep Purple
- Africa, South America
- Wealth, Healing, Spirituality
- Balance, Peace
- Pink Sapphire
- Rose Quartz
What to Look for in Amethysts
COLOURGemstone colour is often the most important factor in determining its value. The highest quality amethyst is a vibrant reddish-purple, with darker shades of amethyst fetching higher price tags than their lighter counterparts. We love amethyst for its diversity of shades. Here are the trade names of popular types of amethyst:
- Rose de France:
- Also known as lavender amethyst, Rose de France amethyst is the colour of fresh lavender accompanied by a blushy pink hue.
- Siberian amethyst, regardless of origin, is the highest quality amethyst available. These gems are a stunning midnight purple with sparkling glimmers of red and blue.
- Ametrine, commonly known as bolivianite, is a naturally occurring mixture of amethyst and citrine. The presence of citrine gives this gemstone a dramatic yellow and violet colour blend.
CUTThe cut of a gemstone is what gives it symmetry and shows off the stone’s colour and brilliance. Amethyst is suitable for all types of cuts because of its eye-clean nature. Large cushion-cuts or delicate round-cut amethyst look especially impressive, as do artistic fantasy cuts.
CLARITYGemstone clarity is determined by any inclusions embedded in the gem such as gas bubbles, fractures, or small crystals. Amethyst is considered an “eye-clean” gem, meaning the majority of amethysts on the market don’t contain visible inclusions that you can see with the naked eye.
SIZE (CARAT)Gemstone size is based on diameter in millimeters as opposed to diamonds, which are valued based on carat weight. Amethyst gemstones are easy to find in large deposits which make them a popular and affordable choice for large centre stones in any type of jewellery.
ENHANCEMENTMost amethysts sold on the market today, like most gemstones, are enhanced, which means they’re treated with heat or infusion to improve colour and clarity. Our amethysts undergo rigorous internal inspections and are of the highest quality.
While amethysts are more abundantly found today, they were often considered just as rare as rubies in centuries past. Before South America’s impressive amethyst deposits were found in the 1800s, amethysts gemstones were highly expensive and difficult to find.
Ancient Greeks loved these gems, often believing that amethysts could keep people from getting too inebriated when drinking. They named the stone “amethystos,” which translates to sober. They would wear different amethyst types or even drink from chalices made of the gem.
Hardness & Wearability
Choosing the Right Amethyst Jewellery
Famous Amethyst Gemstones
Amethyst has long been regarded as one of the happiest stones. Leonardo da Vinci wrote that amethyst dissipates evil and sharpens intelligence. Saint Valentine, patron saint of lovers, wore an amethyst ring carved in the likeness of cupid, and celebrities from Elizabeth Taylor to Katy Perry have adorned themselves in fine amethyst jewels. Satisfy your curiosity about the allure of amethyst by learning what your favourite gemstones say about you.
Some of the most famous amethyst gemstones have been worn by royalty. The Swedish royal family’s Napoleonic Amethyst Parure Tiara is a dazzling creation made from a necklace that was said to belong to Napoleon's first wife. Some of the oldest jewels in the British Royal Family’s jewellery collection are also amethysts, with several amethyst-focused jewellery pieces from the 19th century still being worn today. Known as the Kent Amethysts, these pieces include ornate amethyst and diamond-laden necklaces, brooches, earrings and hair combs. Danish Princess Benedikte is also known to sport impressive amethyst jewels with a matching set of earrings, a bracelet, a necklace and a brooch.
How to Care for Your Amethyst Jewellery
- 1Purchase from reputable jewellers to ensure you’re choosing authentic amethyst gemstones.
- 2Pick the purple hue that’s in your budget. There are several amethyst types available and lighter-coloured gems will cost less than ones with deeper colour.
- 3Choose a metal that meets your budget. Our amethysts are set in a variety of metals to match all budgets and styles. Choose from platinum, silver or gold.
- Real amethysts vary in price and are more affordable today than they have been in the past. Our amethyst jewellery starts at around NZ$ 140.
- The darker purple hues of this gemstone are the more valuable versions. Lighter-coloured amethysts will sell for a lower price.
- Visual inspection is the best way to tell if an amethyst is real. A genuine amethyst may have uneven coloration throughout the gem and it’s likely eye clean.
- Today, there are plentiful deposits of this purple gemstone. Up until the 1800s, amethyst gemstones were incredibly rare. But today, it is easy to find beautiful purple crystals alongside many quartz deposits.
- Amethysts are the violet-hued variety of quartz. These crystals are formed when iron, silica-enriched water and the right amount of gamma radiation combine in the earth’s crust. This results in electron changes as the amethyst gemstone forms, creating the signature purple hue. Some amethyst crystals may have varying gradients of the purple coloration caused by differences in the environment as the crystals formed over time.
- Amethyst gemstones are often heat treated to solidify their beautiful purple hues. Untreated amethysts should not be exposed to prolonged heat or UV rays.
- A highly historical gem, this purple-hued version of quartz has represented many things throughout the years. Most commonly, it represents healing, purity and clarity.
Learn More About Gemstones
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