Citrine is November’s Birthstone

Citrine is the official birthstone for the month of November.  Replacing the simple name of yellow quartz, the name “citrine” was officially adopted for this stone in 1556.  Citrine is derived from the old French word “citron”, meaning yellow.  Citrine has been used as an embellishment on tools and in the jewelry making industry for thousands of years. It gained popularity as a decorative gem in ancient Greece during the Hellenistic Age.  In the 17th century, Scottish weapon makers placed citrine on dagger handles, sometimes using a single large citrine crystal as the handle itself. Largely due to Queen Victoria’s fascination with the gem, citrine became a popular gemstone for traditional Scottish kilt pins and shoulder brooches.  Citrine again rose to prominence during the Art Deco period that began in the early part of the 20th century.

Citrine is the golden orange variety of quartz, occurring in (or heated to achieve) shades of light to dark yellow, orangey gold, and golden brown. Citrine (quartz) ranks a 7 on Mohs’ hardness scale. 

Citrine is a hard, tough stone best cleaned with warm soapy water and a soft brush. Ultrasonic cleaners are usually safe for citrine, but because some citrine is heat treated, steam cleaners should be avoided to prevent color loss.