Delicate beauty, coupled with durability, makes coloured gemstones a worthwhile investment, while the romance and legends associated with these stones contribute to their universal fascination.
There are countless existing gemstones, with some of the most popular ones allocated to the 12 months of the year. These valuable gemstones are available in limitless colours and qualities.
History of Traditional Birthstones
Beautiful stones, minerals, pearls and precious metals have long been considered collectables. Gemstones have long been associated with healing powers, and were also worn to signify position and wealth.
In respect to birthstones, many cultures had their own references to meaning and usage. However, the influence of zodiac signs was recognized early on, with key gemstones becoming associated with their respective planetary influences.
Modern birthstones did not exist until 1912, when the Jewelers of America developed a standardized list of birthstones for each month.
While older stones tend to be left in their natural state, coloured gemstones are now often treated to enhance their colour and longevity. Common treatment methods include heat, irradiation, diffusion and oiling.
Traditional Birthstones Chart
Click on the images below to learn more about each gemstone.
* Images provided courtesy of the American Gem Trade Association – www.agta.org