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The John Atencio Jewelry Glossary The John Atencio Jewelry Glossary
Glossary › Peridot

Glossary: Peridot

Peridot: the August Birthstone

With an exhilarating vivid green hue, peridot captivates the eye. Thought to elicit stimulating positive energy, peridot - the August birthstone - looks beautiful in bracelets, rings, earrings and necklaces. The gemstone’s warm, yellow-green color contrasts brilliantly with classic yellow gold, refined white gold and sleek sterling silver. Peridot also pairs harmoniously with a wide array of colorful gemstone jewelry.

A Timeless Classic

Prized by pharaohs, kings, emperors and empresses, peridot gemstones have been popular among the wealthy and the nobles for more than two thousand years. Derived from the Greek word “peridona,” meaning “giving plenty” and the Arabic word “faridat” which translates to “gem,” peridot is popular all over the world. The gemstone is considered sacred in the Hawaiian islands, where it is associated with the goddess Pele, legendary ruler of wind, fire and volcanoes. Throughout the world, many cultures have coveted peridot due to the gem’s supposed ability to bring good fortune and protect against evil spirits.

Bright and vivid, August’s birthstone has long been associated with light. In fact, the ancient Egyptians called peridot the “gem of the sun.” The Egyptians mined peridot on the island of Zabargad, and many of the larger fine peridots are showcased in the world’s most famous museums.

From a geological point of view, peridot is obtained from some meteorites and solidified magma or lava found near volcanic sites. A form of the mineral Olivine, peridot gets its color from the iron within its chemical makeup. Although it is one of only a few gemstones available in a single color, there are many variations in hues, from light chartreuse to deep olive to bright lime green.

Large intensely colored peridots can be spectacular, and lovely smaller gems are featured in diverse jewelry pieces at all price points. On the Mohs scale for hardness, peridot ranks 6.5 - 7, making it tough enough for everyday wear with special care.

The Evening Emerald

Often dubbed the evening emerald, peridots range in color from yellowish-green to a very deep olive green. According to many historians, Cleopatra's legendary collection or emeralds was, in fact, actually a collection of peridots.

Although they are often confused for emeralds due to their color, peridots differ in some important ways. For one, they generally range from a mossy green to a deeper olive green, while emeralds have a verdant, deep green hue. Peridots are also typically eye-clean, while the majority of emeralds have at least some visible inclusions. Due to their exceptional clarity and greater refractive index, peridots tend to shine a bit brighter than emeralds.

Caring for Peridot

While peridot is safe for everyday wear, it isn’t as durable as many other gemstones. Rough conditions and intense impacts can scratch peridot gems. While it is relatively durable, peridot jewelry requires special care and should never be stored with diamonds and other hard gemstones. Ideally, you should wrap your peridot jewelry in a soft cloth to prevent scratches.

When cleaning peridot, it’s important to avoid household cleaners. Instead, simply use warm water, mild soap and a soft cloth to remove oils and dirt. Never use steam or ultrasonic cleaners since this can permanently damage the gemstone.

A Lively, Stylish Gemstone

Although peridot is a traditional gift for an August birthday or 16th anniversary, anyone can add a beautiful peridot ring, necklace, bracelet or earrings to their jewelry collection. Lovely in sterling silver, white and yellow gold settings, peridot is commonly found in classically faceted gemstone shapes that showcase its dazzlingly vivid sparkle.

While it pairs harmoniously with neutral colors and earthy tones, peridot is just as stunning when worn along with other vivid colors or a variety of contrasting gems.

Bursting with invigorating intensity, August’s lively green birthstone complements a variety of ensembles. Striking peridot rings add a flash of color to your finger, while delicate bracelets and pendants feature strings of glittering peridot gems that elevate any look. The stunning peridot gemstone shines especially bright for August birthdays and bestows its beauty on any gemstone lover, whatever their birth month.

At John Atencio, we have a compelling collection of beautiful peridot gemstones that beautifully blend with our expertly crafted jewelry pieces. With a master’s intuition, John deftly blends an assortment of gemstones and precious metals to create unique jewelry pieces that are wearable works of art.

At John Atencio, our jewelry experts can show you how to choose jewelry featuring your birthstone or that of someone you love. Visit one of our nearby locations and let our attentive jewelry experts guide you to any inspired jewelry piece for yourself or the special people on your shopping list.