If August were a gemstone it definitely would be peridot and it just so happens that it’s the August birthstone! I think of August as the hottest month, the month that you start longing for fall, and the month that everything in Florida seems to be at its peak in greenness. Peridot as a gemstone embodies all those traits for me. It has a vivid lime green color that makes me think of pool floaties, cut lime wedges in cold beverages, and the lime green summer dresses that makes your tan look deeper. The green color is also a wonderful transition color from summer to fall.
August birthstone, peridot, has a long history on God’s “green earth” but also it has been found in fallen meteors and its main mineral, “olivine” has been found on mars! It literally is “out of this world.” All puns aside, peridot is just stunning. It is one of the only gemstones that only comes in the color of green. As many artists know, green comes in many, many different shades and hues; peridot does too. The tones range from yellowish-green to dark brownish-green, just like the changing leaves of fall.
Peridot History Through the Centuries
Throughout history, peridot jewels have been confused with emeralds. It was thought for a long time that the very large peridot jewels weighing more than 200 carats each adorning the Shrine of the Three Kings at the Cologne Cathedral were emeralds. Some historians even believe that the famous emeralds that were loved by Cleopatra were actually August birthstone, peridot! Ancient Romans referred to peridot as “evening emeralds” since their green intensity did not darken when the sun went down. This may be why history tells us that peridots were only mined at nighttime because it was believed they were not easily seen in daylight. Also, peridot is believed to be the gem that Napoleon gave Josephine to declare his love for her.
August Birthstone Fun Facts
There are other features of August birthstone that make it unique and special. It has “double refraction”, meaning that you see two of each pavilion facets. In plain English this means that it sparkles more and has more color saturation being registered back to your eye. Peridot is also one of just a few colored gemstones that goes untreated due to its excellent transparency and intense natural color from the iron content. Most sources of the August birthstone come from Burma, Pakistan, China, Vietnam and the US (Arizona is the largest contributor).
How to Shop for Peridot
The most favored peridot color is a richly saturated pure grass green. Brown undertones lower the value of peridot. The best-quality peridot has no eye-visible inclusions, with perhaps a few tiny black spots—actually minute mineral crystals—visible under magnification. Other inclusions common in peridot are reflective, disk-shaped inclusions called “lily pads.” With skilled cutting maximizing its beautiful body color, peridot can be a stunning gem. It’s available in a wide variety of shapes and cutting styles, including ovals, pears, rounds, emerald cuts, cushion cuts, triangle cuts, and marquise shapes. Standard peridot cuts for the jewelry industry include a wide range of shapes and sizes. The gem is inexpensive in smaller sizes, but prices rise for gems above 10×8 mm. August birthstone is a softer stone that is best set in jewelry that doesn't see hard wear. Bezel settings that protect the stone are recommended.
Custom Peridot and August Birthstone Jewelry
If you are looking for a peridot piece to add to your jewelry collection, we have custom designs available. Check out our custom page here to become the jewelry designer and create a unique piece for yourself. You can use peridot as an August birthstone piece, add it to a Mother’s Day ring, or just create a piece to celebrate this gorgeous gem! Please let us know if you need help creating something special. Our team of designers is ready to assist.
So whether you love or hate the August birthstone that is peridot, you can appreciate its unique nature and its historical stamp on our jewelry world. Check out these beautiful cascading drop earrings that have lovely peridot as an accent. The settings are crafted from luxurious 18k white gold. The peridots are the perfect color of green with no visible inclusions which makes them higher on the desirable scale. The pink tourmalines are another precious gemstone that add the perfect complimentary color to the peridots. To add a touch more sparkle, there are diamonds set all down the dangle with a total of 0.37ctw. They are currently 30% which is a huge discount on these special earrings, grab them quick! Happy Birth Month to our August Babies!