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Birthstone Guide

Birthstone1January – Garnet

Colour: Burnt orange, deep red, mahogany brown and more unusually yellow to lime green.

Sources:  Burma, Brazil, China, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Tanzania, United States

Interesting Facts: A garnet in its crystal form is rounded and so its name is derived from the Latin word for grain, and, also from its similarity to the red seed of a pomegranate.

February – Amethyst

Colour: Lilac to blackberry purple

Sources: Mainly Brazil, Madagascar, Zambia, Uruguay.

Interesting Facts: Amethyst means ‘not drunk’ in Greek and in past times was worn as an amulet to ward off drunkenness.

March – Aquamarine

Colour: Mostly green but can be brown, translucent or opaque.

Sources: Mainly Brazil, also Australia (Queensland), Burma, China, India, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Nigeria, Zambia and United States

Interesting Facts: Aquamarine is named after its sea water colour and means ‘water of the sea’ in Latin.

April – Diamond

Colour: Colourless, pale yellow, brown, black, rarely; pink, green, blue, red, orange.

Sources: Australia, Botswana, Russia, South Africa, Zaire, Namibia, Brazil, Ghana.

Interesting Facts: Diamond derives its name from the Greek word ‘adamas’ which means unconquerable.

May – Emerald

Colour:  Light green to dark green.

Sources: Brazil, Columbia, Ghana, India, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Zambia

Interesting Facts: Emerald is named after the Greek word ‘smaragdos’ which means green stone.

June – Pearl

Colour: White, cream, golden, pink, silver, grey, black.

Sources: China, Japan

Interesting Facts: Pearls have been used in jewellery for 6000 years and in 2500BC a large pearl trade existed in China.

July – Ruby

Colour: Pale to deep red.

Sources: Mainly Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka

Interesting Facts: Named after its colour ‘ruber’ meaning red in Latin.

August – Peridot

Colour: Vibrant lime green to dark olive green.

Sources: Burma, Australia, Brazil, China, Egypt, Norway, United States

Interesting Facts: Peridot derives its name from the word ‘faridat’ which is Arabic for gem.

September – Sapphire

Colour: Pale to royal blue, dark blue, colourless, pink, peach, orange, yellow, green, purple.

Sources: Australia, Burma, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United States

Interesting Facts: Sapphire is named after its colour – it means blue in Greek.

October – Opal

Colour: Milky or grey background with flashes of colours; orange, red, green, blue. ‘Fire Opal’ is bright orange.

Sources: Mainly from Australia but also from USA, Brazil, Mexico

Interesting Facts: Mainly cut as cabochon stones, opal are formed from silica gel.

November – Topaz

Colour: Colourless, yellow, orange, red-brown, light to dark blue, pink.

Sources: Mainly Brazil (Light blue topaz have been found in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Cornwall)

Interesting Facts: Topaz is probably named after an island in the Red Sea, formerly Topazos, now Zabargad.

December – Turquoise

Colour: Sky blue to green blue.

Sources: Iran, Tibet, Mexico, USA, Russia, Chile, Australia

Interesting Facts: One of the first gemstones ever to be mined, some turqouise jewellery can be dated back as more than 3000 years old.