- Peridot is gem-quality forsteritic olivine. The chemical composition of peridot is (Mg, Fe)2SiO4, with Mg in greater quantities than Fe.
- Peridot is the gem form of the mineral olivine and is called sometimes Chrysolite.
- Peridot is the only gemstone found in meteorites.
- Hardness (Mohs scale) 6,5 - 7
- Peridot was called «Gem of the sun» by the ancients. They believed that it had the power to dissolve enchantments and to drive evil spirits away.
- The origin of the name "peridot" is uncertain. The Oxford English Dictionary suggests an alteration of Anglo-Norman pedoretés (classical Latin paederot-), a kind of opal, rather than the Arabic word faridat, meaning "gem".
- Small crystals of peridot are often found in the rocks created by volcanoes and can also be found in meteors that fall on earth.
- Olivine in general is a very abundant mineral, but gem quality peridot is rather rare.
- 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.
- Peridot is one of the few gemstones that occur in only one color: basically an olive green.
- For peridot to exert its full powers as a talisman, it had to be set in gold, and when worn in this way, it was thought to dispel the terrors of the night.
- Many beautiful examples of peridot were brought back from the Mediterranean area during the Crusades and used to decorate European cathedrals, where they still remain.
- The largest cut peridot olivine is a 310 carat (62 g) specimen in the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C..
- In powder, peridot was used as a remedy for asthma. When held under the tongue, it was believed to lessen the thirst in fever.
- In much antique jewelry, peridot could have come from Egypt: in the late 18th/early 19th century, peridot was taken from Egyptian ecclestial and other ornaments and reused in jewelry.
- Peridot, alternating with sardonyx, is the birthstone for August.
- Peridot olivine is mined in North Carolina, Arizona on the San Carlos Reservation, Hawaii, Nevada, and New Mexico, in the US; and in Australia, Brazil, China, Kenya, Mexico, Myanmar (Burma), Norway, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and Tanzania.
Seventeen peridot facts