THE GLORY OF GREEN
Many August born ladies frown upon their birthstone, but the Peridot which is often overlooked should get more attention with its exquisite brilliant green which symbolise the abundance
and prosperity of the last month of Summer, August which bring us vibrant greens before the Autumn hues start to emerge.
Did you know Peridot is the only gemstone found in meteors, in fact, some specimens have journeyed to Earth on pallasite meteorites which are the remnants of the birth of our solar system. Yes, now what other gem can live up to that? Peridot, in fact, is the first gemstone discovered on another planet. Huge deposits of peridot crystals were discovered on Mars during a 2003 mission to survey the Red Planet.
Today, the world’s peridot supply predominantly comes from the San Carlos Reservation in Arizona. Peridot is also mined in parts of China, Myanmar, Vietnam, Tanzania and Pakistan.
Peridot, also called precious olivine, is a gem-quality transparent green olivine. The crystals of peridot have a vitreous lustre and conchoidal fracture. Gem-quality olivine is a mineral that composes a lot of the earth's mantel, the layer below the crust. It is also common in basalts on the moon.
Peridot has been adored since ancient times and has been valued for centuries. Peridot was greatly prized by Egyptian Kings. Some of Cleopatra's emeralds were Peridots.
The most beautiful stones come from the border area between Pakistan and Afghanistan. However, the peridot as a gemstone also exists in Myanmar, China, the USA, Africa and Australia. Stones from East Burma, now known as Myanmar, have a vivid light green and fine inclusions with a silky shine to them. Peridot from Arizona, where it is popularly used in native American jewelry, often has somewhat yellowish or gold-brown nuances.
Properties of Peridot
Peridot is the gem variety of the olivine group, which has the following species: Forsterite, Mg2SiO4 Fayalite, Fe2SiO4
6.5 to 7
Imperfect to distinct in one direction (rarely seen)
3.34 + 0.17, – 0.07
0.035 to 0.038
Orthorhombic; usually occurs as rounded pebbles; well formed crystals are quite rare
Mainly green; sometimes yellow or brown
Weak to moderate, dichroic
Cat’s eye and star peridot are known, but are rare
Never clean peridot ultrasonically.
Not safe in steamer.
The best way to care for peridot is to clean it with warm, soapy water. Avoid exposure to heat, acids and rapid temperature changes
Peridot is not typically enhanced