In the book I’m currently reading, one of the characters is very learned in the use of magic and magical items – like crystals, gemstones, and such.
This sparked my curiosity and so – Did you know ....
Amber is regarded as one of the luckiest gemstones. According to legend, amber originated as the tears of the sisters of the dead Greek hero Meleager (a hero respected in Calydon. He was famed as the host of the Calydonian boar hunt and was one of the Argonauts). Amber has been worn in amulets since ancient times in the belief that it bestows medicinal benefits and offers protection against witchcraft and nightmares. It has also believed to prevent plague, whooping cough and asthma.
Amethyst was thought to have particular significance in relation to strong drink. For instance, drinking liquor from an amethyst cup was thought to prevent drunkenness and carrying an amulet would cure alcoholism. It’s was also thought to cure headache, toothache, gout, protect against nightmares, locusts, thieves, storms, and infidelity.
In the book I’m reading, the gemstone in question is a yellow Topaz. Topazes come in a variety of colors but the most recognized is yellow to light brown. It is supposed to bring good fortune in finance matters, attract friends and suitors, make the wearer courageous and wise. Plus, it gives a certain amount of control over wild animals. (In my book, it is of great importance in asserting control over animals and humans.)
It was believed that Peridot had the power to dissolve enchantments and to drive evil spirits away. It was able to strengthen the power of any medicine drunk from goblets carved from the gemstone. When used as protection against the wiles of evil spirits, peridot was pierced and then strung on the hair of a donkey and attached to the left arm. Powdered, it was used as a remedy for asthma. When held under the tongue, it was believed to lessen the thirst in fever.
Pearls have been long known as the "Queen of Gems". In China, pearls were thought to be raindrops swallowed by oysters. The Chinese associated dragons and pearls together, since they believed dragons fighting in the clouds caused pearls to drop from the sky in the form of rain. During the Dark Ages, gallant knights often wore pearls onto the battlefield to protect them from harm. The ancient Greeks believed that wearing pearls would promote harmony in a marriage and prevent newlyweds from shedding tears.
When crushed to powder, Hematite has a deep red color. Early Romans would crush the mineral and rub the red powder onto their bodies, believing this would bestow courage, strength, and a general invulnerability. It is believed to be a healing and grounding stone, strengthening the body and lessening life’s stresses. Hematite will also boost self-esteem, confidence, and willpower, and help to overcome compulsions and addictions.
In ancient times it was believed that the Tourmaline is found in all colors because it traveled along a rainbow and gathered all the rainbow's colors. It is believed to strengthen the body and spirit, especially the nervous system, blood, and lymphs. It is also thought to inspire creativity and was used extensively as a tailsman by artists and writers. Also, if rubbed or heated, it will develop a static charge that attracts lightweight particles to its surface.
While Emerald is the birthstone for May, it is also the birthstone for the Zodiac signs of Cancer. It will give the wearer the ability to foresee the future and be protected against evil spells. It was also believed to cure diseases like cholera and malaria. Wearing an emerald will make one an eloquent speaker, improve memory, and refresh vision.
Jade is said to bless whatever it touches, serving mankind across the globe for nearly 6,000 years. For primitive peoples in the British Isles, its toughness, and ability to polish and sharpen made it a favored stone for axe heads, knives and weapons. Indigenous tribes of Mexico, Central and South America, and New Zealand carved it into deity masks and ritual artifacts. Jade has been the most highly esteemed stone in China throughout recorded history and was valued for its beauty and powers of healing and protection. And, according to some, if you take a hammer and hit a diamond, the diamond will shatter into a dozen pieces. Hit a piece of quartz and it’ll split in two. However, if you hit a piece of jade, it’ll ring like a bell!