Amethyst- the February birthstone February 06 2017

Amethyst is the traditional birthstone for those born in February.

Amethyst is the most valuable form of quartz. The name amethyst comes from the Greek word amethystos and translates as ‘not drunk’.

There are two main myths about the origins of the name of the gemstone.

 In one the drunken Greek god of wine Dionysus, was chasing a beautiful young girl called Amethystos. She rejected his advances as she wanted to remain chaste and prayed to the goddess Artemis to protect her. Artemis changed Amethystos  into a white pillar of crystal so Dionysus could not corrupt her. When Dionysus saw this he was humbled and made an offering of wine to the gods by pouring it all over the white crystals and turning them purple.

In a different version of the story Dionysus was angry as a mortal insulted him. As revenge for this insult he planned to attack the next mortal to cross his path with fierce tigers. A beautiful maiden called Amethystos was on her way to pay her respects to the goddess Diana when she encountered the tigers. Diana saw what was about to happen and saved Amethystos by turning her into a pure white crystal quartz. When Dionysus saw the beautiful crystal statue he wept tears of pure wine in remorse which dyed the statue purple.

In ancient Greece and Rome drinking vessels were often made of amethyst in the belief that they would prevent intoxication.

The birthstone poem for February

‘The February born shall find
Sincerity and peace of mind
Freedom from passion and from care,
If they, the amethyst will wear.’

The amethyst gemstone is associated with the properties of peace, stability, balance, calm, inner strength, courage and sincerity.

Amethysts are purported  to help treat addiction, headaches, insomnia, pain relief and general healing.