Historical Gemstone trivia
Book of Shadows - 1990
Did you know…
Until the discovery of bulk Amethyst in Brazil, in the 19th century, amethyst was considered a precious stone and had been, as far back as ancient Greece.
In the last century, specific stones such as aquamarine, peridot, and cat’s eye (cymophane) have been popular and were regarded as precious.
Now, diamonds, rubies, sapphires, and emeralds still have a reputation that exceeds those of gemstones (an actual citation is needed as proof). Rare or unusual gemstones are generally meant to include those occurring so infrequently in gem quality that they are scarcely known, except to connoisseurs, like the andalusite, axinite, cassiterite, clinohumite, and red beryl.
The Greeks valued asteria (the star effect) which were regarded as powerful love charms, legend has it that Helen of Troy was known to have worm star-corundum.
Legend and stories abound, but I’ll stop here.
Remember, I put this together 30 years ago so some classifications may have changed.
That is so interesting! It’s also so neat that you have your old BoS to look through again.
I love Amethyst!! It’s one of my favorite crystals.
Thank you for sharing a piece of your history with us @Garnet!
I knew of certain stones growing up that you would see commonly in jewelry. I also remember that Amethyst was my Grandmother’s favorite. I believe I have some of her Amethyst jewelry in my jewelry chest (it was hers, when she passed I got her bedroom set & its part of the set)
I was never sure why certain stones were always in jewelry but these other beautiful stones weren’t very common. Throughout history there are a lot more stones that adorned jewelry head wear, shields, armor, etc
It wasnt until within the last couple of years that I realized how many pieces of jewelry are sold at jewelers with stones that aren’t as scarce as they are made out to be. Also, that they make some stones in a lab, so they are replicas of stones but sold as the actual stone… unless you pay attention to the description or read the fine print.
I had a jeweler try to tell me that the diamond earrings I bought were actually white sapphires. They had multiple people come look at the stones. I had the receipt that said diamonds. They still said white sapphires & called over others to look at them & hold them to the light & look through magnifying scopes & lenses.
The jewelery store sent them out to be replaced & the same woman that was adamant they were white sapphires with her colleague was there when I picked them up. As I turned to walk away, I asked her to check which stones had to be replaced. She looked at the earrings, looked at me, looked at the slip, & said your diamonds were replaced with diamonds. I said thank you & walked out of the store.
I haven’t been back to that particular store, but it’s not uncommon for jewelry store employees on the sales floor, to not know what they are looking at if there’s no tag with it to tell them or to say they are lab created. They seem to know from looking through their different scopes & lenses though.