Back before the Middle Ages, cardinal gems were seen as the most valuable. These include gems such as Diamonds, Rubies, Emeralds, and Amethysts.
These were classes as cardinal as they were exceptionally rare back then, and rare gems were reserved for only members of the royal families of that time, as well as religious leaders, and those who had magical abilities.
But… What happened?
Let us tell you!
How Much Is Amethyst Worth?
Over time, the list of cardinal gems remained pretty much the same, for all except amethyst, which sadly, left the list.
Amethyst ended up getting removed from the list when it was found that there were colossal deposits of this gemstone in South America in the eighteenth century.
Then, all of a sudden amethyst was much more available, and it was no longer viewed as being rare, and therefore it was no longer cardinal.
Now, in modern times, even the highest grades of amethyst are actually very affordable. You can easily get amethyst for $20 to $30 for each carat. The gemstones which are exceptionally pure can be a bit higher at $40 to $50 for each carat.
It is no longer the high-valued gemstone it used to be, and it is now easily affordable to most people, which is good for those who wish to gaze upon its beauty but do not have a high paycheck, but bad for those who have some amethyst and were hoping to sell it.
What Affects The Value Of Amethyst?
While the cost which is associated with Amethyst has dropped quite a significant amount since the times in which it was especially rare, it now remains as being a gemstone that is extremely popular due to its unique royal-blue, purplish hue.
The biggest deposits of amethyst that are mined today have a much less saturated coloring, the variety which has a royal deep variety is the rarest, and therefore this type of amethyst is much more highly priced.
Throughout history, the finest amethyst has come from deposits in the Ural Mountains of Russia, or from Idar-Oberstein in Germany.
However, in the 19th century, rare discoveries were found in Uruguay, as well as some more deposits in Zambia.
Those which were mined in Zambia remain to be the source of the finest in the world. It has a color that is creamy and deep, rich in color, in some occasions Zambia mines produce such a deep hue of amethyst it can sometimes result in the gems being rejected due to the darkness of the color.
But, Zambian amethyst remains to be rare, and it has gemstones that can be larger than 19 carats and are reserved only for royalty.
However, as royal amethysts have been discovered in Brazil and Uruguay as well, there are rules around the selection of amethyst for its pure colors and not its origins
Now, we ask how much it is worth in correlation with its demand as well as preference and availability.
At the end of it all, all that matters is the collector’s market and what they are seeking after. Some may seek the richest and deepest hues of this stone that they can get their hands on, but others may seek out lighter stones for sparkle and beauty.
Amethyst mined in South America usually has more of a sparkle, making the amethysts mined here a very sought-after commodity.
What Are The Identifying Characteristics Of Amethyst?
There is a factor that can occasionally affect how much value an amethyst has, is that on occasion it can actually seem very similar to other gemstones such as sapphires, rhodolite garnets, and also spinels.
Since these gems are only ever rare in their hues of purple, amethyst is easy to confuse with rare stone types, although this usually only happens to those with an untrained eye.
There is likely to always be some noticeable but small differences in their optical and physical characteristics, however. One of these is actually the gravity value of these different gems.
When you go to buy an amethyst, make sure to take a very close look and know what to look for when you do so.
You should watch out as well is that amethysts created synthetically can also be sold as natural stones, which means it is not actually amethyst.
Synthetic amethysts are made in labs, and they are made via the exposure of smoky quartz to high gamma ray volumes.
Is Amethyst Very Expensive?
When it comes to amethysts, their color is everything. If the color is rich, the gem will be more expensive. Amethyst pricing will, therefore, remain very close in association with how rich and clear the hue is. The question of the price of amethyst is usually a more relative matter.
It depends on the demand, personal preference, and use as well.
For example, this stone is very popular for decoration.
Brazil and Uruguay will contribute a good 5k tones of amethyst globally each year, and while the bulk is used ornamentally and decoratively, the amethyst which is mined from smaller geodes up to 20 feet in size has also been found in some parts of the world, and are rare (see also ‘13 Decorative Crystals‘).
These small geodes are much rarer and are often sold at a significantly higher price.
There are also some other factors that determine the price, including quality, unique formations, as well as the specifics of attributes that collectors are seeking out.
Amethyst is a common and fairly cheap gemstone in the mineral market. It lost its expense when mass mines of it were found. That being said, should you get your hand on an amethyst geode (see also, ‘How to Open a Geode?‘), these can be worth a great deal more than individual stones.
Be aware of superficial amethysts, which are just smokey quartz in disguise. True amethyst will often be significantly darker, and the most valued ones will be especially dark.