In ancient times yellow quartz was also called chrysolite and in the Middle Ages it was a collective name for gemstones with green-golden reflections. The origin of the name "peridot" is unclear, one theory derives the name from the ancient Greek term "paederos" (opal), another from the Arabic term "farida" (unique). Peridot is already mentioned in the Old Testament. In ancient Rome the stone was valued as "evening emerald", and in the Middle Ages it was often used in church ornaments. While olivine is widespread, peridot is rarely found, which is a consequence of the chemical instability of the mineral at the earth's surface. Often only small crystals are found, the size of a fingernail or a few centimeters at most. Peridot forms in deeper igneous rocks and is found in volcanic basalt as well as in meteorites. The oldest known deposit, for which mining has also been documented since the 1st century AD, is St. John's Island in the Red Sea. Today especially important deposits are located in Egypt, the US, China, Sri Lanka and Pakistan. Peridot is sometimes confused with emeralds and other green gemstones such as chrysoberyl, moldavite or tourmaline. Unlike other gemstones, peridot is not subjected to treatments such as irradiation or burning, and the green coloration is always natural. Compared to other green gemstones like emeralds, peridot is still relatively inexpensive, but for high quality stones, prices are increasing in recent years.  

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