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Birthstones - Some Facts and Legends About the Gems that Add a Personal Element to Jewelry Design

Birthstone jewelry make great heirloom, wedding and anniversary gifts. The personal connection to a loved one’s time of birth adds value to this jewelry style. However, we thought it would be fun to share withyou some ancient legends and facts about these stones. Discover the backstory about your birthstone below.

 pearl strand with various gemstones



January-born babies get to claim this elegant, blood-red beauty. Did you know that the garnet makes up a family of six different stones? They are - grossular (red to orange colors), spessartite (green-brown), andradite (brown to black), almandine (red), pyrope (red and pink), and uvarovite (emerald green).


This gorgeous purple gem is recognized as the birthstone for February. According to Greek myth, amethyst could keep you from getting drunk, and could protect you from poisonous foods or drinks served in containers made with these stones. 


Aquamarine is said to bring clarity and protect travelers at sea. The latter is linked to the legend that since the stone color resembled the ocean, sailors wore talismans made of this stone, featuring the god Neptune, who ruled the seas. With the aid of Neptune and the stone, they thought they’d have protection from the rough sea environment.


The stone known as a ‘girl’s best friend’ could also be called a ‘life saver’ according to ancient legend. It was said to cure illness if you took it to bed with you! That would certainly quantify the cost of diamonds today. More recently, science has found  a way to create diamonds in a microwave, which could change the diamond industry.


If you were born in May, you get to claim this striking gem as your birthstone. An emerald without flaws can cost more than a diamond. In India they were said to cure every stomach ailment to kidney stones – and poisoning!

 Pearl or Moonstone

These white glowing gems give June-born people a choice of jewelry styles. The lovely luminescent moonstone can vary in color. You have a choice of blue, peach, and of course, white. You have a choice with classic pearls, too – white, black, grey and beige.


The ruby is the gemstone for July. According to Hindu legend, it was said that this stone could ward off evil and had magical powers. One of these powers was the ruby would get darker when evil was near and get lighter in tone when the evil was gone – when worn by the rightful owner, of course.

 Peridot & Spinel

Peridot and Spinel give August babies a choice of birthstone options. Peridot is produced from the common mineral olivine. Olivine develops within the earth’s mantle and volcanoes later push it to the surface. In Hawaii, it symbolizes the tears of the volcano goddess, Pele. Spinel resembles rubies and sapphires, but has a lower Mohs hardness. Noteworthy – some of the most famous rubies, like the one’s in the Crown Jewels of England, was found to be large spinel.


Sapphire is the birthstone for September. This stone alone offers much variety for those born in this month, as it comes in rainbow assortment of colors (suggest to link to Nafco’s site). Greeks adorned themselves with this stone for guidance when seeking answers from the oracle. Kings of the Early Christian period believed it had protective powers and wore it in ecclesiastical rings.

 Opal & Tourmaline

Those born in October can choose from opal and tourmaline jewelry. According to the book, A Chronological History & Mythology of Opals, legend has it the opal can make one invisible. Tourmaline is unique in that it can become electrically charged with heat and pressure (piezoelectricity). When charged, it acts as a magnet.

 Citrine & Topaz

November-born people are among the fall and winter babies that have a choice of birthstone options. Romans are thought to be the first people to have worn citrine. Sometimes it starts as amethyst, but then molten rock heats it and changes the color. During Europe’s Renaissance, topaz was thought to break spells and deter anger when worn. The most valued color is Imperial topaz, which appears a vivid orange with pink undertones.

 Tanzanite, Turquoise & Blue Zircon

Lucky December-born people have three choices of birthstones!  Turquoise was the first mined and used in jewelry, but zircon is the oldest on earth. Tanzanite is the most recently discovered. However, the latter is limited in supply, due to its popularity and per a 2012 study on one of the main mines. The TanzaniteOne Mining Ltd – owned mine has a production rate of 2.7 million carats per year, and the Tanzanite supply may be depleted in 30 years.


If this article inspires you to invest in birthstone jewelry for yourself, you can do something truly unique. You can learn to make a piece in one of Harold Studio’s classes. Or, you can request a custom piece from us at Harold Jewelry!

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