Citrine derived its name from the word "citrus" due to the yellow color it possesses. However, I don't think of citrus when I look at the gemstone. I view the gem as a representation of fall and the change in color of leaves. This is fitting as it is the birthstone of November. It is also the 13th wedding anniversary stone. Citrine is the most popular yellow stone and a member of the quartz family. It is closely related to amethyst and their main difference is the amount of oxidation within the stones. In some areas of the world the two stones grow together to make up the gemstone ametrine, a bi-colored gem composed of purple and yellow hues.
Citrine comes in a variety of yellow shades and when mixed together they certainly do resemble fall colors. There is yellow citrine which has a yellow lemon-like color. Golden citrine possesses a deeper yellow tone. Madeira citrine has a golden-orange to reddish-brown tone. Fire citrine is a trade name given to the deep orange variety. Lastly, there is palmeira with its bright orange color. Citrine with a saturated reddish-orange color is the most valuable.
As with many other gemstones, it has been used in jewelry for hundreds of years. It was known as "the stone of success". Ornaments were adorned by the stone and it was often used to decorate tools and weapons. This particular use was common in Ancient Greece as well as in Scotland. It was often believed to be a stone of protection from evil. Citrine increased in popularity during the 20th century and was frequently used in art deco.