Peridot is one of the most visually striking gemstones, with its mix of bright summery greens and gorgeous glowing golden tones. Unlike many gemstones, which are colored by impurities and known as allochromatic, Peridot is idiochromatic, which means its color comes from the chemical composition of the gem.
Peridot is the gem variety of the mineral olivine. Its chemical composition includes iron and magnesium, and iron is the cause of its attractive yellowish green colors. The gem often occurs in volcanic rocks called basalts, which are rich in these two elements.
Peridot is one of the oldest known gemstones, and has been mined as a gem for over 4,000 years. It is actually mentioned several times in the Bible, although you may not recognize the name as it is referred to by its original title, Chrysolite. The name Chrysolite was taken from the Ancient Greek word ‘chrysolithos’ meaning ‘golden stone’, as there are often flashes of golden brilliance seen within the gem.
This stone has long been associated with luck, and many cultures have celebrated the unusual and mystical elements of the stone in their myths and legends. Historically, there was an apparent belief that Peridot could ward off evil spirits and that if the stone was then set in gold (and other precious metals) its capacity to bring the bearer good luck and fortune was intensified even more.
Peridot is the birthstone for August and the 15th anniversary gemstone.
CARING FOR PERIDOT
You need to be careful when cleaning peridot. It is best to clean jewelry containing peridot with a soft cloth in warm, soapy water. This gemstone should be stored separately as to not be scratched by other stones, and it should be placed away from high heat sources as it may crack.