The name ‘peridot’ is derived from Arabic and Greek traditions; the former meaning gem and the latter conveying good fortune. Peridots are a rare variety of the olivine mineral. It forms within the earth’s mantle and pushes up to the surface during volcanic eruptions.
In Hawaii, peridots symbolize Pele, a volcano goddess who determines lava flow during a volcano eruption.
The signature green color of this gemstone depends on the amount of iron that is present. Peridots rank 7 on the Moh’s scale of hardness. A majority of the world’s peridots are sourced from San Carlos in Arizona, Pakistan, Myanmar, China and Africa.
These beauties resemble sapphires and rubies, but their octahedral structure is what sets them apart from other gemstones. In fact, many spinels are mistaken for rubies.Spinels are frequently found in vivid red (the most desired color), bright pink, cobalt and orange. Some are also found in lavender and yellow. This stone ranks less for hardness than rubies.
Some of the world’s largest spinel deposits are found in Myanmar, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Australia, Brazil, Nigeria and Tanzania. When shopping for a spinel, look for a stone without inclusions.
This gemstone is comprised of two alternating layers of onyx and sard which creates zebra-stripes or red and white bands. The name ‘sardonyx’ is derived from the Persian city of Sardis where this stone was first found. Sards range in shades from reddish brown to yellowish red. This depends on the quantity of iron oxide. Some of the best sardonyx gemstones display sharp and vivid contrasting bands. These are typically found in India.
Other areas in the world where sardonyx can be found are Germany, Brazil, Uruguay, Madagascar and the United States.
In ancient times, this stone was worn for protection and strength. It is believed to protect the home from forces of evil.