Natural Gemstones for your personalized engagement ring and jewelry
January 16, 2017
History of Birthstones. What is your Birthstone? and more information.
Birthstones, stones for fortune, horoscope, birth signs, etc. -when we choose a gem, we can do it based on many factors. The most common factors are colour, hardness, "fashion or trend", but we must not forget or ignore something that has been going on for millennia: the protection we seek in them.
These precious stones of fortune, or birthstones are used in jewelry a lot, whether it is a ring, necklace, bracelet, or pendant. And also for special gifts: engagement or promise rings, for mother's day, etc.
Each month of the year is associated with a certain gem, like the signs of the zodiac, anniversaries, etc. The correspondence of a particular stone with a certain month has been changing over time, although the use of gemstones as an amulet is still frequent even today.
The attraction we feel to gemstones goes way back, with Pliny the Elder writing over 2000 years ago:
“That nothing may be wanting from the work which I have undertaken, it still remains for me to speak of precious stones: a subject in which the majestic might of Nature presents itself to us, contracted within a very limited space, though, in the opinion of many, nowhere displayed in a more admirable form.”
For millennia, man has sought protection and fortune from these small miracles of Nature.
In the Bible there is evidence of the use of gems (Exodus 28 and 39), there were 12 gems on Aaron's chest (a religious garment in the form of a breastplate), representing the twelve tribes of Israel. Through later writings we know that, later on in history, associations were made between these 12 precious stones used on the breastplate and the 12 birth signs of the zodiac, as well as the use of these stones as a talisman.
But it is not only the Judeo-Christian religion that is associated with precious stones, we also find something similar in Hinduism. The belief that the position of planets and constellations at the time of one’s birth affects life, meant that Vedic astrologers would use certain gems to minimize or maximize the influences of planets in people's lives. There are nine gems that they use (Hessonite, Garnet, Blue Sapphire, Cat's Eye, Yellow Sapphire, Emerald, Diamond, Pearl, Coral and Ruby), which correspond to the seven planets and to the two moon nodes.
In Islam, this is based on legends associated with Ali Ibn Abu Talib (cousin and son-in-law of the Prophet Muhammad). He adorned himself with four rings, each of which had a different stone. These stones are believed to be Carnelian, Ruby, Turquoise, Hematite. These stones conferred certain powers to their holder (protection, respect and dignity, strength, beauty, etc.).
But it was in the 16th and 17th century when the use of precious stones as birth stones became very popular in Poland. The richest and most powerful members of society used, each month, those precious stone that corresponded to the time of year, in order protect themselves from the misfortunes of life. At the time only a few lucky ones were able to use a different stone every month, and the less fortunate, if they were lucky, had to be content with the stone that represented their birth month.
The current list of birthstones has little to do with Aaron's breastplate, especially given they have been changing over the years since.
In 1912 the American National Retail Jewelers Association, now known as the Jewelers of America - JA, published a list of Birthstones, a list that was modified in 1952 as a consequence of new consumer preferences, adding the Alexandrite, the Citrine, the Tourmaline and the Zircon.
In 2002, AGTA (American Gem Trade Association) added Tanzanite as a birthstone of December and it was during the last year, in 2016, that the Spinel was included to the list as the birthstone of August.
Obviously, we cannot ignore the commercial background and the marketing campaigns behind all this, comparable to what happens with Valentine's Day, Mother's Day or the use of diamonds as an engagement gift, synonymous with eternal love. But in the case of birthstones, we find stories that speak of distant times, where man embraced his beliefs, superstitions, myths and legends; where gems were endowed with healing, beneficial and therapeutic powers, which are still believed even today. And all this, we must not forget, is our history.
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February 13, 2018
Here you will discover the differences between a cultured pearl vs natural pearl, how pearls are formed, types of pearl, their main characteristics, quality of pearls (nacre pearl, pearl luster, natural pearl colors, pearl size) , varieties of cultured pearls (cultured freshwater pearl and cultured saltwater pearl), history, etymology, etc.
February 05, 2018
La amatista es la variedad púrpura del cuarzo transparente y su color puede variar de un lila pálido a un púrpura intenso. Esta piedra preciosa es la gema natal de Febrero y está asociada al signo zodiacal Piscis.
Su nombre procede de la palabra griega AMETHYSTOS que significa no intoxicada / sobria.
February 04, 2018
Beautiful purple variety of quartz, its color can range from a pale lilac to deep purple. This purple gemstone is the Birthstone of February.
The name meaning of Amethyst comes from a Greek word Amethystos (not intoxicated).