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Peridot

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Peridot gemstones were once thought to contain rays of sunshine, an observation likely borne from its golden to deep green glow when in sunlight. The Egyptians first found peridot at Zabargad, a Red Sea island and peridot was found in jewelry from the early 2nd millennium BCE. Peridot gemstones were thought to protect wearers from evil spirits. Peridot is a gemstone everyone can enjoy. It is one of the August birthstones, but those born in other months may also take pleasure from its beauty.

Peridot Facts

  • Peridot is the gem-quality green variety of olivine.
  • Egypt was an early source of peridot but is no longer a commercial producer of it. Burma (Myanmar) and, more recently, China, Pakistan and the United States are the world’s most productive sources today. Australia, Brazil, Ethiopia, Kenya, Norway and Sri Lanka are sources too, but have not produced significant commercial quantities in recent years.
  • Peridot has a hardness of 6.5-7.0 on the Mohs Hardness Scale.
  • Peridot gemstones can be cut into many shapes and sizes, often as faceted gems and sometimes as cabochons or beads.
  • Peridot can be yellowish green to greenish yellow to brownish-green. Some contain inclusions that cause internal stresses, which produce discoid fractures known as lily pad inclusions.

Simulated Peridot

  • Currently man-made peridot is not available, but it can be imitated using glass, cubic zirconia and synthetic corundum. This should be understood by the seller and clearly disclosed to the buyer.

Peridot Care & Cleaning

  • To minimize scratching and wear, store each piece of fine jewelry separately in a soft cloth or padded container.
  • Peridot is not an extremely hard gem, so use of ultrasonic cleaners and steam cleaners is not recommended.
  • Avoid prolonged exposure to extreme heat, acids and sudden temperature changes.
  • Peridot jewelry is best cleaned with warm, sudsy water and a tightly woven microfiber or other soft cloth.
  • Take all your fine jewelry to a professional jeweler at least twice a year for a thorough cleaning and inspection.
  • See our full guide to jewelry care and cleaning

 

Content © GIA. Image © Robert Weldon/GIA
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