Quartz is a member of the silicate group of minerals. There are many gemstone varieties of quartz, including amethyst, citrine, ametrine, rock crystal and rutilated quartz.
For thousands of years, quartz has been used in jewelry from fine quality rich purple amethysts to striped agates and carved rock crystal ornaments.
Quartz comes mainly in two forms: crystalline or macrocrystalline is usually transparent or translucent (for example, citrine and rose quartz), while cryptocrystalline or microcrystalline is generally more translucent to opaque, (for example, chalcedony and jasper).
Amethyst is a variety of quartz, with a range of color from purple to red-purple.
Amethyst derives its name from the ancient Greek amethustos, meaning literally “not drunk”. It was believed to guard the wearer against drunkenness.
Traditionally associated with purity and piety, amethyst has also always been favored by royalty, adorned in religious jewelry and royal crowns for ages. It was once considered an equal to ruby, emerald and sapphire. Purple is considered a regal hue.
Amethyst is found in Africa, Brazil, Uruguay, Siberia and North America. Other sources also include Madagascar, Canada, India, Mexico, Myanmar (formerly Burma), Namibia, Sri Lanka and Tanzania.