Pearl Birthstone History
Hey there! Today we're going to dive deep into the world of birthstones, and specifically the pearl, which happens to be the birthstone for the month of June. Pearls are some of the most beautiful and unique gemstones in the world, with a rich history and cultural significance that dates back thousands of years.
First, let's talk about what a pearl actually is. Unlike most gemstones that are found in the earth's crust, pearls are formed inside mollusks such as oysters and clams. When a foreign object, like a grain of sand or a piece of shell, enters the mollusk's shell, the animal coats the irritant with layers of nacre, a crystalline substance that creates the beautiful iridescent sheen that pearls are known for.
The word "pearl" comes from the Latin word "perna," which means leg, because the round shape of a pearl resembles a small leg. In ancient times, pearls were incredibly valuable and were often used as currency, or worn as jewelry by royalty and nobility. In fact, Cleopatra was said to have dissolved a pearl in a glass of wine and drank it, in order to win a bet with Mark Antony that she could spend the equivalent of a country's wealth on a single meal.
Throughout history, pearls have been associated with purity, innocence, and beauty. In many cultures, pearls were given as a wedding gift to symbolize the bride's purity and the couple's love. In ancient Greece, pearls were thought to be the tears of the gods, while in Japan, they were associated with dragons and believed to bring good luck and protection.
Today, pearls are still highly prized and worn by people of all ages and backgrounds. While natural pearls are rare and expensive, cultured pearls, which are grown with the help of human intervention, are more widely available and affordable. Pearl jewelry, including necklaces, bracelets, and earrings, make excellent gifts for loved ones, and can be worn to add a touch of elegance to any outfit.
So, whether you're a June baby looking to celebrate your birth month, or simply someone who loves the unique and timeless beauty of pearls, there's no denying the allure and significance of this fascinating gemstone. So next time you admire a pearl necklace or earring, remember the rich history and cultural significance that makes this gemstone truly special.
Shop our pearl-inspired candle here.