Amethyst is a transparent variety of quartz that contains trace amounts of iron, an impurity that lends amethyst its lovely violet hues.

Class: semiprecious
Origin of Name: possibly from the Greek amethustos ("not drunken"), perhaps given to the stone in the belief that the wearer would not suffer greatly from drinking too much alcohol
Color: various shades of purple
Chemical Composition: silica
Crystal System: trigonal
Hardness: 7
Specific Gravity: 2.65
Geographic Origins: Brazil, Mexico, Ontario


Photo: ©International Colored Gemstone Association/Van Rossen

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