Scientific Information: When volcanic lava cools, pockets in the magma begin to form and gas fills them. If manganese is in those pockets during the cooling, the quartz crystals that form retain a purple hue.
Revealed by Man: Amethyst was first discovered in the Archaic period, when Ancient Greece began to thrive, around 6th to 8th century BC. Leonardo Di Vinci in the late 1400s was quite fond of amethyst.
Legend and Lore: Ancient Greeks believed that amethyst would deflect intoxication. In medieval Europe, soldiers would wear amethyst to battle because it would deter distraction. Amethyst is said to promote dreams and intelligence.
Learn more about minerals & fossils.