Main index --- Minerals list --- Jewelry index Olivene
Name:Olivene and Peridot
Derivation: From "peridot" (French)
From "oliva" (Latin) olive
Formula: (Mg,Fe)2SiO4
Description: Olivene is speckled green. If clear translucent green, then it is peridot.

Peridot Another name for Olivine is Chrysolite.

Peridot was used in antiquity, mined from the Red Sea island of St John. However, it was later forgotten, until Napoleon brought it back from Egyptian Treasures. Peridot was widely used in Victorian jewelry, but the stones always came from existing jewelry, as mining on St John didn't start up again until 1930.

Rocks containing Olivene are sometimes found in lava. This is thought to be pieces of the mantle of the earth, carried upwards by a volcano. Practically everything we can see of the earth, including nearly all the minerals in this website, is just the crust of the earth, which is very thin, only 7-35 km (relatively thinner than the skin of an apple!). Underneath is the mantle, and a piece of Olivene is the closest we will get to see it. I find it very interesting that one of the basic rocks of the earth is green, since we tend to think of the earth as green (because of plants) although it looks blue from space.

Larger pictures of Garnet:

A cluster of olivene crystals.


Some polished (tumbled) specimens of peridot (clear transluscent olivene).