Amethyst is a type of quartz crystal with transparent shades of purple. Amethyst is noted as being one of the most popular semi-precious gemstones. This crystal can also be found in shades of green, yellow and brown; colors which are achieved by heat treatment. Color can fade if exposed to the sun for too long, so be selective where displaying this stone.
Amethyst derives from the Greek word “amethystos”, meaning “not drunken”. There are a few versions and sources of this legend. One story notes the Roman god of wine, Bacchus, who cursed a young maiden, Amethyst, who was on her way to worship the shrine of the moon goddess of chastity and the hunt, Diana. The curse had sent angry tigers to devour the beautiful maiden, and just before the vicious tigers were about to attack, Amethyst called out to Diana for help who turned her into a clear white crystal. Bacchus soon acknowledges the wrongdoing and pours wine over the clear stone statue as an offering, which dyes the stone purple. Other versions of the story include Dionysus, the Greek god of intoxification, and Artemis, the Greek goddess of the hunt. Although each legend is slightly different, all stories end with pouring wine over the crystal and turning it purple. It is also remarked that wearing amethyst was to prevent the bad effects of too much alcohol, thus given its name “not drunken”.
(*Note to self: wear Amethyst when going out for drinks)
Amethyst forms in geodes, a round crystal filled cavity found within volcanic rock. The cavities are filled with mineral rich particles and over time crystallize into large crystals or layers of small microcrystalline crystals. The purple coloration is caused by impurities of iron or manganese compounds. The hues range from pale red-violet to deep violet.
In spiritual and emotional healing amethyst is a stone of the mind. It brings calmness and clarity when there is anxiety and confusion. Amethyst balances all systems of the body making it a universal healing stone. In chakra healing Amethyst stimulates the brown/ third eye and crown chakras.