Joining June and December, those born in August have the option of choosing from three birthstones - sardonyx, spinel, and peridot.
Although sardonyx is the original birthstone, peridot became August’s primary and most popular gemstone.
Featured in the Birthstone Wall Art Collection as “I am August”, peridot was officially recognized as the August birthstone in 1912 by the Jewelers of America.
Known for its iridescent green hue, peridot also serves as a 16-year wedding anniversary gift.
Dating back to the second millennium BC, these ancient Egyptian gemstones are said to have come from deposits on a small volcanic island called Topazios, located in the Red Sea.
One of the oldest gemstones, most scholars collectively agree that the word “peridot” derived from the Arabic “faridat”, which means “gem”. However, some believe “peridot” is rooted in the Greek word “peridona”, meaning “giving plenty”.
A rare variety of olivine minerals, peridot is formed in the Earth’s mantle and brought to the surface via volcanos. As well, the “I am August” gemstone is also found in meteorites.
Many say it’s a by-product of the birth of our solar system.
While hues may vary from yellowish green to olive to brownish-green, the gemstone’s luminous green color is a result of the mineral itself, not from trace impurities, as with other stones.
It’s one of few gemstones that only comes in one signature color.
Measuring between 6.5 - 7 on the Mohs scale, this August birthstone was valued in many medieval and ancient cultures.
Known to the ancient Egyptians as the “gem of the sun”, peridot was believed to shield its wearer from evil spirits and terrors of the night. August’s radiant green gemstone was also ground into powder and mixed in potent drinks and concoctions used in ceremonies.
Conversely, in ancient Rome peridot was called “evening emerald”, due to its elegant shade of green.
Romans believed the gemstone provided protection against enemies and symbolized strength, so they wore peridot rings during battle.
From its various mystical and curative properties to promoting all the processes of renewal, growth, rebirth, and rejuvenation, peridot has a number of renowned health and wellbeing properties.
Due to global distribution, August’s peridot gemstones can be found across many regions in Africa, Asia, and the United States.
Exceptionally exquisite, it was once thought that the peridot gemstone contained sun rays, giving off sparkling hues. While not quite true, it is possible to display peridot’s beauty in your home or office (or anywhere suitable to your liking).
Consider adding “I am August” to your wall art collection (or start an art collection).