Pearl Is June's Birthstone
By Sam Serio
If you're still young enough to remember your birthday,
you probably also remember the special birthstone assigned to it. But at your age, we bet
you don't really know the SIGNIFICANCE of your birthstone and what power the ancients felt
would be bestowed about you by wearing it.
June's Birthstone: Pearl
Birthstone Properties: Truth and beauty
Alternative Birthstones: Moonstone and Alexandrite
Pearl is the official birthstone of the month of June. It
is also the accepted anniversary gemstone for the 3rd and 30th years of marriage. Pearls
have adorned crowns, clothing, and temples, and were said to be a favorite of Cleopatra,
yet there are perfectly suited to young girls and are a popular gift for first communion.
Pearls come in a wide range of colors from delicate rose
white to black. The higher the luster or orient, the more valuable the
specimen. Greeks believed that pearls were the hardened tears of joy that the Love Goddess
shook from her eyes as she was born from the sea. In Arab legend, pearls were formed when
oysters were lured from the depths of the ocean by the beautiful moon and then swallowed
moonlit dewdrops. Ancient Chinese thought that these gems originated from the brains of
Whatever their origins, pearls are magnificent!
and Her Shapely Sisters
It's hard to believe that the coveted pearl comes naturally from one of the humblest of life forms -- the mollusk. Divers find natural pearls in The Persian Gulf as well as in the waters off Japan, the South Pacific Islands off northern Australia, and the coasts of Panama, Venezuela, and California.
Besides the popular round shape most people associate with
pearls, there are also large hemispherical cultured pearls (called mabe), fresh water
pearls (elongated in interesting shapes and colors) and South Sea cultured pearls (from
Australia and Indonesian waters) that grow to 10 mm and up!
Gems of unsurpassed beauty and elegance, pearls have been
a passion and even an obsession of people throughout the ages. They have been ground up
and used in cosmetics and as a medicine to treat heart and stomach conditions. Some
cultures swear by pearls as an aphrodisiac.
Only those with royal status once wore pearl jewelry, but
eventually these gems were seen among all classes of people. They continue to be viewed as
a mark of taste and refinement as well as a symbol of purity, and they are often given to
celebrate a marriage or the birth of a child. Pearls are nature's perfect gift, suitable
for all ages, and elegantly worn with everything from jeans to an evening gown.
Moonstone is a type of feldspar that earned its name
because of its resemblance to the iridescent sheen of the moon. Varying in color from
clear to blue-white or peach, it was believed to endow the wearer with great spiritual
understanding. A gift of this stone is symbolic of health and longevity.
Alexandrite. A yellowish or brownish green in color, this
gemstone has the unique characteristic of changing color to a red hue when exposed to a
glowing light source, such as candlelight. Because of this quality, it has been
characterized by poets as "an emerald by day, a ruby by night."