With lovely violet hues, beautiful amethyst rings have long been admired by jewelry lovers. While amethyst stones, also known as purple quartz, are not unusual, most amethyst stones are not of sufficient quality to be set into amethyst rings or other jewelry. These lower quality stones are the ones you see used as bookends or knickknacks on a shelf.
Amethyst Rings and Color
The shade of amethyst rings can be the softest lavender or deepest purple. Amethyst can actually turn yellow when subjected to high heat – very high, like 800 degrees Fahrenheit.
Amethyst Ring Folklore
Ancient people often attributed metaphysical qualities and healing powers to gemstone jewelry. The ancient Greeks believed that amethyst could cure and prevent drunkenness, and it is said that they even imbibed alcoholic drinks from amethyst cups in order to avoid drunkenness. (Authors note: when I read that I can just picture those amethyst vessels in my mind – can you imagine how beautiful they must have been?) The ancients also believed that amethyst cured poisoning and made the person wearing it more intelligent.
Amethyst Mining Locations
While amethyst is mined at locales all over the world, the majority of the amethyst rings we see today feature amethyst mined from South America, particularly Uruguay and Brazil. The discovery of huge amethyst deposits there during the 19th century lead to an increase of amethyst on the jewelry market, and a consequent devaluation of the stone.
Cuts of Amethyst Rings
Stones in amethyst rings are usually cut into round shapes in order to best display the amethyst’s depth of colors. While amethysts can be found in smooth, unfaceted cabochon shapes, jewelers usually cut them with facets, to better take advantage of light to enhance the stone’s color and sparkle.
Amethyst Birthstone Rings
Amethyst rings are ideal gifts for those born in February, because amethyst is the birthstone associated with February. They’re also perfect in mother rings or grandmother rings for women with a child or grandchild born in February.
Synthetic Amethyst Jewelry
It is best to visit a jewelry store with a good reputation when purchasing amethyst rings. This is because the synthetic amethyst that is on the market right now looks so similar to genuine amethyst that it can be difficult for laymen to distinguish between the two. On the other hand, if you want the look of amethyst without the prices, synthetic amethyst might be just right for you.
Caring for Amethyst Rings
Amethyst can be cleaned with warm, soapy water or jewelry cleaning solution available at your favorite jewelry store. Ultrasonic cleaners are another option for cleaning amethyst rings. Because heat can affect the color of amethyst, avoid heat and cleaning methods that employ heat, such as steam cleaning.