The ancient Egyptians mined peridot on the Red Sea island of Zabargad, the source for many large fine peridots in the world’s museums. The Egyptians called it the “gem of the sun.” Today this gem is still prized for its restful yellowish green hues and long history. Large strongly-colored, examples can be spectacular, and attractive smaller gems are available for jewelry at all price points.
Birthstones & Anniversaries
Peridot is the birthstone for August and the 15th anniversary gemstone.
Some peridot is ancient: it's found in pallasite meteorites, remnants of our solar system's birth.
In 2005, peridot was found in comet dust brought back from the
Stardust robotic space probe.
Gem variety of the mineral olivine: found in peridotite rock from the
earth’s upper mantle.
1.65 to 1.69
0.035 to 0.038
- Mohs Hardness: 6.5 to 7
There are a number of processes used to alter the color, apparent clarity, or improve the durability of gems.Learn More
Some gemstones have synthetic counterparts that have essentially the same chemical, physical, and optical properties, but are grown by man in a laboratory.Learn More
Any gem can be imitated—sometimes by manmade materials or by natural materials chosen by man to impersonate a particular gem.Learn More
Why We Love This Gemstone
Peridot crystals are found in meteorites: some rare extraterrestrial crystals are even big enough to facet as cut gemstones.
Most gems are colored by impurities such as iron. Peridot's color is intrinsically yellow-green. Higher-quality stones have an intense color.
Peridot has extremely high double refraction: when you look closely through the gem, you can see two of each pavilion facet.
Beautiful, yellowish green peridot has been treasured since earliest times.
Although the best peridot is a pure grass green, most peridot is yellowish-green.
Most fine peridot is eye clean. Tiny black spots might be visible with magnification.
Peridot is cut in a wide variety of styles, including ovals, emerald cuts, and cushions.
Large crystals of peridot have cut gems more than 50 carats in size.
Peridot Quality Factors: The Comprehensive Guide
Explore sources, gemological research, and the role of gems in history.
Peridot from the Central Highlands of Vietnam: Properties, Origin, and FormationNguyen Thi Minh Thuyet, Christoph Hauzenberger, Nguyen Ngoc Khoi, Cong Thi Diep, Chu Van Lam, Nguyen Thi Minh, Nguyen Hoang, and Tobias Häger , Nov 7, 2016 Read Article
Identification of Extraterrestrial Peridot by Trace ElementsAndy H. Shen, John I. Koivula, and James E. Shigley , Nov 11, 2011 Read Article
Characterization of Peridot from Sardinia, ItalyIlaria Adamo, Rosangela Bocchio, Alessandro Pavese, and Loredana Prosperi , Jun 1, 2009 Read Article
Gems of the World