A gemstone or gem is a piece of mineral crystal or other natural material which, in cut and polished form, is used to make jewelry or other ornamentation. In the past gemstones were divided into two groups: precious stones that include diamonds, emeralds, rubies and sapphires and semi-precious comprising all others. Now this classification is not applicable anymore. The belonging to one or another kind doesn’t make the gem valuable. The price depends on such factors as color, clarity, cut, carat weight, rarity and popularity. The four first factors (so called “four C”) are essential in determining the stone’s quality.
Each gem has the unique combination of characteristics and its own meaning. Lets make a short review for some of them.
DIAMOND is the particular gemstone because it contains only one element – carbon. Also this gem is the hardest known substance on earth. There are a lot of colors of diamonds, but the most common colors are yellow and brown instead of white or “colorless” that is well-known as the symbol of pure eternal love and usually associates with engagement. Diamond is the birthstone for April and the symbol of the 60th wedding anniversary.
EMERALD is one of the most recognizable gemstones because of its reach green color that can vary from bluish-green to yellowish-green. There are beliefs that emerald influences on human mind improving memory, intelligence and even helping to predict the future. Emerald is May’s birthstone and symbol of the 55th wedding anniversary.
RUBY is the magnificent deep red sapphire also known as the king of precious stones. It is considered to be the stone of nobility and passionate love. Ruby is the body and mind protector, it helps to stabilize situations in different spheres of human life (financial, romantic, health-related, energetic, etc.). Ruby is the birthstone for people born in July and the symbol of the 40th wedding anniversary.
SAPPHIRES are the most colorful gems. Despite the associations with blue, their color spectrum is very wide excluding red. Sapphire is believed to be the gemstone of creative undertakings and inner peace. It is the birthstone of September and the symbol of the 45th wedding anniversary.
AMETHYST is the purple member of the quartz family. Its color gamma includes different shades of purple such as light lilac, lavender and mauve, but the most valuable is deep purple. This gem is known as the sobriety stone which helps to overcome various addictions and to stabilize the mind. Amethyst is the birthstone of February.
TOPAZ was associated with the Sun God in some ancient cultures. The name of this gemstone translated from Sanskrit means “a fire”. It was named so because most of its colors are warm: red, orange, peach, pink, gold, yellow, brown. The blue Topaz is the birthstone of December while the yellow Topaz is November’s stone.
AQUAMARINE is the charming blue gemstone which color can vary from pale heavenly blue to deep sea blue or teal. The name of this stone can be translated from Latin as “water of the sea” that reflects its main meaning: aquamarine provides protection to those who spend a lot of time in water. It is March’s birthstone.
OPAL is the rainbow stone. Its extraordinary peculiarity is the ability to refract light in a special way that is called Opalescence and feels like a play of colors. Opal is represented in black, white, gray, yellow, colorless, orange and red colors. It is described in many legends as a stone that gives fire to the people and heals different. Opal is the birthstone of October.
In conclusion, from the ancient times gems are revered and honored in all cultures that is reflected in folklore, myths and legends where these colorful stones usually symbolize wealth, happiness and love. Gemstones are unique and valuable as nature’s creatures and after being treated by jewelers they truly become masterpieces.