Birthstones by Month

Posted by on March 21, 2011 at 08:11 am

Birthstone Chart

NOTE: Gems by James has a wide selection of custom cut gemstones as well as jewelry items available in our shop (click here). In fact, you can special order gemstones from Gems by James. Please contact us for additional details.

A few gemstone examples cut by James Inge during the past few months:

 

BIRTHSTONE CALENDAR:

January

Garnet: Garnet signifies eternal friendship and trust.  The word “Garnet” is derived from the word granatum, which means seed.  The Egyptians used garnets as inlays for jewelry.  Garnet comes in a rainbow of colors, from the deep red of the pyrope garnet to the vibrant green of tsavorites.  Today, significant sources for garnet are Africa, Sri Lanka, and India.

February

Amethyst: Amethyst is the gemstone believed by ancient Greeks and Romans to ward off intoxication. The gemstone has been associated with many myths, legends, religions, and various cultures.  It was used in the Middle Ages to symbolize royalty. Amethyst is purple quartz as well as a blend of violet and red. Historically, the finest amethyst was found in Russia but today Brazil is the primary source of amethyst although fine material can be found elsewhere, such as in Zambia.

March

  • Aquamarine
  • Bloodstone

Aquamarine: The name aquamarine is derived from the Latin word aqua (water) and marina (the sea).  This gemstone was believed to protect sailors and guarantee a safe voyage.  Aquamarine is often light in tone and ranges from greenish blue to blue-green; the color is often more intense in larger stones.  Sources mainly include Brazil but it is also in Nigeria, Madagascar, Zambia, Pakistan, and Mozambique.

Bloodstone: The second birthstone for March is bloodstone, which is a dark-green jasper with vivid red spots of iron oxide.  Sometimes called the martyr’s stone, legend believes it was created when drops of Christ’s blood stained some jasper at the foot of the cross.  The primary sources for this gem are India, Brazil, and Australia.

April

  • Diamond

Diamond: Diamonds are forever, what else can we say here? And, today, there are more choices than ever. Diamonds in hues of yellow, red, pink, blue, and green range in intensity from faint to vivid. In general, the more saturated the color, the higher the value. In fact, diamonds sparkling with intense color are rare and very desirable as a result. Diamond is the anniversary gem for the 10th and 60th years of marriage.

NOTE: Diamonds of all colors, shapes and sizes can be special ordered from Gems by James. Please contact us for additional details.

May

Emerald: The emerald is a symbol of rebirth. It is believed to grant the owner foresight, good fortune, and youth. Most of the world’s emeralds are mined in Colombia, Brazil, Afghanistan, and Zambia.

June

  • Alexandrite
  • Moonstone

July

Ruby: Ruby’s rich red color speaks of love, passion and fire. They are said to guarantee health, wisdom, wealth and success in love. Ruby is a variety of corundum, which is harder than any natural gemstone except diamond. Fine-quality ruby is very rare and the color of the gem dictates the value. The most prized color is a medium or medium dark vivid red or slightly purplish red.

August

Peridot: A transparent yellowish-green Magnesium/Iron Silicate, Peridot is a gem variety of the mineral Chrysolite or Olivine. Peridot ranges in color from light yellow-green, olive green and brownish green. The intensity and tint of the green depends on the crystal’s iron content. The most valuable gem is the dark-olive green color. Tinges of brown or visible flaws greatly diminish the gems value.

Olivine, of which peridot is a type, is a common mineral in mafic and ultramafic rocks, and it is often found in lavas and in peridotite xenoliths of the mantle, which lavas carry to the surface; but gem quality peridot only occurs in a fraction of these settings.In general, Olivine is a very abundant mineral but gem quality peridot is rather rare.

Peridot olivine is mined in North Carolina, Arizona on the San Carlos Reservation, Hawaii, Nevada, and New Mexico, in the US; and in Australia, Brazil, China, Kenya, Mexico, Myanmar (Burma), Norway, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and Tanzania.

September

Sapphire: Sapphire has been popular since the Middle Ages. According to folklore, sapphires will protect your loved ones from envy and harm.  Medieval clergy wore sapphires to symbolize heaven and people thought the gem attracted heavenly blessings.  Sapphires occur in a wide range of colors; from very light to very dark greenish or violet-blue, and various shades of blue.  It is a variety of corundum, which occurs in all colors.  Pink, purple, green, orange, or yellow corundum are known by their color (pink sapphire, etc.).  Sapphire is the anniversary gemstone for the 5th and 45th years of marriage.

October

  • Opal
  • Tourmaline

Tourmaline: Tourmaline is one of the favorite gemstones among designers and collectors. It occurs naturally in a wide variety of colors; it is known for displaying multiple colors in the same gemstone.  One variety is known as watermelon tourmaline, which is green, pink, and white color bands. There are many sources including Brazil, Afghanistan, East Africa, and the USA.

Opal: The name opal is derived from the Greek “Opallos” meaning to see a change. In the case of opals, the radiance is see as change of color.  They range in color from milky white to black with flashes of yellow, orange, green, red, and blue.

November

  • Citrine
  • Topaz

Topaz is the traditional anniversary gemstone for a couple’s fourth anniversary.

Citrines:

December

  • Tanzanite
  • Zircon
  • Turquoise

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