Being a variety of quartz amethyst is fairly tough but the colour is sensitive to heat and light. It should therefore not placed in direct sunlight or close to a source of heat.
Birthstone for the month of february, amethyst is a natural mineral whose colour has long been a source of fascination. Prior to 1856 the colour purple could only be produced from natural dyes. Paintings of animals and human hands have been found on cave walls in France that have been dated to 16,000 to 25,000 BC. The dye is believed to have been created from sticks of manganese and hematite powder.
In the 15th century BC, a purple dye was being produced from the mucous (not to be confused with mucus) of the murex sea snail also known as purple dye murex. Thousands of these predatory molluscs were needed to make the tiniest amount of dye.
No rock and mineral collection is complete without amethyst. This free-standing rough crystal was carefully chosen for our collection during one of our many trips to South Africa.