Birthstone Colors: August

August is a late summer month, generally characterized by the lowering of July’s heat and the welcoming of the encroaching autumn that September will bring. There are a few stones recognized as August’s birthstone, but the most widely accpeted stone captures the gradual retreat of the yellow summer sun and the last month of green leaves.

The modernly accepted birthstone for August is Peridot, a yellow to yellow-green stone. Pronounced as “pair-uh-dot” or “pair-uh-doe,” the name of the gemstone is thought to have come from either the Arabic word faridat (gem) or the French word peritot (unclear). While peridot is considered a common stone, by no means should it be suggested that it is not worthy of appreciation. Peridot is often born in lavas, or in the ‘mantle’ that lava carries at its surface.

Peridot Birthstone     peridot rings on granny smith apples


Alternate August Birthstones

Not everyone likes Peridot because of its pale yellow-green colour. For some August babies, hope still lies in the traditional birthstone choices of Sardonyx and Carnelian.

sardonyx piece

Onyx is commonly found containing white, black, and tan, but it can contain every colour except for blue and purple. Sardonyx, however, is named such because of its bands of Sard, a yellow or brownish-red variety of Chalcedony (a form of silica), mixed in with the Onyx. The result is a beautiful series of bands, even within a small stone. Purely black Onyx is still common, but not as common as Onyx with bands.

carnelian stone sun arrangement

Carnelian (sometimes spelled Cornelian) is one of many quartz varieties. The stone itself can be either an orange-red or reddish-brown. It was widely used as signets in seal rings about two-thousand years ago because hot wax does not stick to Carnelian, opposed to some other stones and wooden stamps previously used. As a colour, Carnelian is the official colour of Campbell’s Soup and Cornell University.

Another alternative to Peridot is another form of quartz, Aventurine. The most common colour of the stone is green, but it may also be orange, brown, yellow, blue or grey. The Feldspar variety of Aventurine, or Sunstone, and has appeared in red-oranges and light purples, but it is not common.

Sardonyx Carnelian

So, a warm-colored Happy Birthday to all of you August babies out there.

Author: ruecian