Birthstones are surrounded by myths and legends and they're traditionally believed to possess magical energies that could be used as protection. It was thought that wearing the gemstone during its associated month helped to enhance its abilities.
Use this guide to birthstones by month and find a beautiful jewellery piece to symbolise birthdays or landmark dates that are personal to you and your loved ones.
Amethyst gemstones have been thought by some to bring CLARITY to the mind, enhance CREATIVITY and PROTECT the wearer from evil thoughts.
According to folklore, Greek hosts would use glasses carved from amethyst to disguise their drinks as wine so as to remain sober among drunken guests. Only royals were allowed to wear the purple gem. The early Egyptians believed that the stone possessed positive powers and placed it in the tombs of pharaohs. Medieval churchmen used amethyst rings and jewels to promote divine revelations and WISDOM.
Amethyst was also the stone of royalty, representing POWER.
Aquamarine, as the name suggests, is named after the element of water. Translated from Latin, aquamarine means 'water of the sea.' This gemstone was believed to have originated from the jewel caskets of sirens, washed ashore from the depths of the sea and it was considered sacred to the sea gods Neptune and Poseidon.
It has been said that the ancient Greeks and Romans believed having an aquamarine aboard a ship would protect against evil and bad luck so the sailors wore aquamarine talismans carved with Poseidon on a chariot. Because of the serene colour that the gemstone has to offer, it it though to promote CALMNESS and PEACE in the beholder.
The diamond is harder than any other substance on Earth and it has become a symbol of enduring LOVE. The product of extreme pressure and temperature, diamonds flaunt a sparkle like no other stone.
The name diamond is derived from the Greek 'adamus' meaning invincible, so it is easy to see how the stone has become a symbol of STRENGTH, UNITY and ETERNAL BONDS. The ancient Greeks believed that diamonds were splinters of stars fallen to Earth.
Cleopatra was known to have a passion for emeralds and used them in her royal adornments. Emeralds are the luscious green gemstones famed for vibrant colour and a unique appearance. Emerald has become a term that names all things natural and fertile, for example the abundant green landscapes of the Emerald Isle.
The ancient Romans dedicated the emerald to the goddess Venus, because it symbolised the reproductive forces of nature and the ancient Greeks used emeralds to honour Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of BEAUTY, LOVE, and FERTILITY. In ancient times emeralds were believed to posses mystical power that could give the wearer the ability to foresee the future and see the truth.
Red rubies have long been regarded as a romantic gemstone, evoking LOVE and PASSION in all its forms. The Sanskrit name for ruby translates roughly as 'king of gemstones.' Legends claim that rubies could turn their colour to a darker red as a warning sign of forthcoming problems and bad luck. It is said that Catherine of Aragon, first wife of King Henry VIII, predicted her downfall in seeing the darkening of her ruby.
Rubies were a favourite adornment of warriors and English royals, seen as symbol of FREEDOM, COURAGE and divine STRENGTH.
Peridot is the olive green, cosmic and ancient gemstone. Peridot is composed from the mineral olivine that has been found in volcanic lava in Hawaii and in pallasite meteorites fallen on Earth. This gemstone is named peridot when it is of gem quality.
The Hawaiian people treasured peridot, believing the gem to be the tears of Pele, the goddess of volcanoes and fire known also as 'She-who-shapes-the sacred-land.' Ancient Egyptians named peridot the 'gem of the sun' due to the brilliance it showcased in the desert sun. It is said by some that peridot can attract WEALTH and drive away evil spirits.
October's birthstone opal is a beautiful and individual kind of gemstone flaunting spectacular flashes of colour and depth. The name is thought to be derived from Greek "opallios" meaning "to see a changing colour".
Opals can form in many colours in different parts of the world. Australia and Ethiopia are known for their opal deposits and Mexico is known for burning orange red fire opals.
This ancient stone was considered a symbol of FIDELITY and ASSURANCE in medieval times while in Asia is viewed as symbol of HOPE.