The main birthstone for August is Peridot.
Peridot, with it's signature lime green color, is believed to instill power and influence in the wearer.
The peridot birthstone is known for being formed under extreme conditions, as it can be found in the hardened lava that carried it from deep within Earth’s mantle as well as in meteorites that traveled from outer space.
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Peridot is the yellowish green to greenish yellow gem variety of the mineral olivine. Throughout history, peridot has often been confused with other gems such as topaz and emerald. The Red Sea island of Topazios, a purported source of the name “topaz,” actually produced peridot. The Shrine of the Three Holy Kings in Germany’s Cologne Cathedral is decorated with 200 carats of gems that were believed to be emeralds but are, in fact, the August birthstone peridot. Some historians even speculate that Cleopatra’s famous emerald collection may have been comprised of peridot.
The word “peridot” comes from the Arabic faridat, meaning gem. This August birthstone was valued in many ancient and medieval cultures. It appeared in priests’ jewelry as early as the second century BCE and later in the chalices and churches of medieval Europe. The peridot birthstone has also been used for centuries as a protective talisman, shielding the owner from evil spirits and “terrors of the night.”
Peridot is the gem given to celebrate a 16th wedding anniversary.
Gladiolus is the Latin for “little sword”, and its common name is sword lily, because of its leaf shape. However, the plant is mainly known by its scientific name. There are around 300 species, the vast majority native to central and southern Africa. The first South African species were brought to Britain in the mid-eighteenth century, and soon breeders were hard at work producing countless hybrids. This process continues today, with science now making it possible to insert genes into the corms and create more disease-resistant gladioli with new colours and scents. The gladiolus is also one of the two birth flowers for August, symbolising honesty and strength of personality. It is also commonly given on fortieth wedding anniversaries.