Throughout time, gemstones have been connected with certain religious and cultural practices. After World War II, diamonds gained popular as engagement rings, although an Emerald or Ruby as an anniversary gift has been around since the Middle Ages. Over the years, the rituals and reasons for giving gemstones or birthstones or birthstone jewelry on birthdays have evolved, but one tradition has remained constant: the giving of jewels to loved ones.
The Origins of the Birthstone
An official birthstone is a gemstone that is associated with a certain month of the Gregorian calendar. According to academics, the practice originated in either Poland or Germany, however it is now widely recognized around the world. The custom of birthstones may be traced all the way back to the Bible in Western civilization, according to historians. Gemstones have traditionally been connected with the Chinese zodiac and astrology, and this association continues today. During the Middle Ages, the fusion of Eastern and Western traditions began to take place. It was customary to wear a certain gem stone for a specific month, which gradually evolved to indicate a stone related with the month of one's birth. Strangely enough, it was not until the twentieth century that organizations such as the Jewelers of America and the British National Association of Geologists formally established their own lists of birthstones.
What are the 12 birthstones in order?
- January is garnet
- February is amethyst
- March is aquamarine
- April is diamond
- May is emerald
- June is alexandrite, moonstone or pearl
- July is ruby
- August is peridot
- September is sapphire
- October is tourmaline
- November is topaz
- December is blue topaz.
Birthstone Chart and Symbolic Birthstone Meaning
- January- Garnet is thought to symbolize faith, fidelity, and truth. It is traditionally a second anniversary gift.
- February- Amethyst is thought to symbolizing royalty, sincerity and strength.
- March- Aquamarine is a symbol of contentment and eternal youth.
- April- Diamond is a girl's best friend and a symbol of loyalty. It is traditionally given as a tenth anniversary gift.
- May- Emerald is believed to promote intellect and integrity. This gemstone is given for twentieth and thirty-fifth anniversaries.
- June- Alexandrite is thought to be both unbreakably strong and to increases self-esteem.
- July- Ruby is believed to preserve mental health controlling passionate desires, and reconciling disputes. It is traditionally given for the fourteenth and fifteenth anniversary.
- August- Peridot is thought to provide protection, health, and to attract love. It is traditionally given for the sixteenth anniversary.
- September- Sapphire it is said to provide its wearer with spiritual enlightenment and inner peace. The gem of destiny is given as a fifth anniversary gift.
- October- Pink Tourmaline is believed to be protective.
- November- Citrine is believed to symbolize lightheartedness and joy.
- December- Blue Topaz legend says that it dispels all enchantment and helps to improve eyesight. It is the anniversary gemstone for the 4th year of marriage.
Birthstones Are Still Popular Today
Giving someone a piece of birthstone jewelry is a kind and meaningful gesture.
It demonstrates thoughtfulness and attention to detail, which, when combined with our handcrafted Irish workmanship, is guaranteed to wow your guests.