Before you dismiss peridot as “that funky green colored gemstone that everybody hates to have as their birthstone because they were unlucky enough to be born in August” consider the following: in Hawaii it is treasured as the tears of Pele, a gift from the goddess of volcanoes. With its lovely pear-green color, peridot is linked to success, peace and good luck! Are you more interested now? In modern new-age tradition peridot is believed to help facilitate deep sleep, repel negative energy and calm the soul. Throughout history this now-fascinating and beautiful gem was placed under the tongue to reduce fevers, powdered and ingested to cure respiratory ailments and made into a paste to treat heart problems. Of course, I do not recommend any of these treatments, but there is solid science that supports the effect that certain colors have on mood and emotional well-being. Peridot (pronounced with or without the hard “t”) is an historic, affordable and fascinating gem that can be used to enhance any jewelry wardrobe. It pairs well with pale blue topaz or turquoise, purple amethyst and dark red garnet.
Today peridot is mined by Native Americans on the San Carlos Reservation in Arizona and can also be found in Pakistan, Burma and China. Peridot is one of the softer gem materials, so care should be taken to avoid scratching and rapid temperature changes. Peridot should also not be cleaned with ultrasonics and steamers. Cleaning should be done with mild dish soap and soft toothbrush. Professional cleaning and inspection at least every 6 months is recommended to keep all of your jewelry safe and beautiful.
Now, stand up Augustinians and wear your peridot with pride!
For specific gem and jewelry questions visit www.kentjewelryrolla.com where you will find a link to the American Gem Trade Association website or contact Kent Jewelry at 573-364-1030. Kent Bagnall is the owner of Kent Jewelry in Downtown Rolla, Missouri.