March Birthstones: Aquamarine and Bloodstone

Aquamarine

March’s birthstone is Aquamarine, a form of beryl, which includes other gemstones such as emeralds. It is a naturally occurring gemstone which means that no artificial heat treatment is ever used to change its color properties.

The tranquility of this light blue gemstone brings forth many feelings such as friendship, harmony and trust.

Today, Aquamarine’s popularity is unprecedented, a reason for which it has become March’s birthstone in the past century. People wear it to get mental and religious inspiration and enhance communication.

March birthstone Aquamarine

Recently designers have begun combining aquamarines with golden citrines, emeralds or garnets, sapphires and pink tourmalines to create a new trend in the fashion jewelry industry.

This gemstone is available to everyone, even if you’re not a sailor or a person born in March. It’s a gem that wears well all year long.
It is also the most complementing of gemstones, no matter what color your hair, eyes or skin, Aquamarine suits all to perfection.

Aquamarine color range

Aquamarine is almost always free from flaws and displays a beautiful brilliance with colors ranging from the palest, nearly colorless blue to bright sea blue. The more intense the color the more valuable the gemstone becomes. And even more, some Aquamarine gemstones have a greenish hue which is also common, but the deep, clear blue gemstones are prized as the best.

Aquamarine

Aquamarine: Myth and Magic of the March Birthstone

In legends it is said that mermaids kept this gemstone hidden in their treasure chests while Neptune, the Greek God of the Sea, considered the Aquamarine sacred. It was also considered to bring good luck to sailors with a protection from sea monsters while bringing the sailors a safe voyage.

Aquamarine Meaning and History

It’s been used in jewelry manufacturing since the third century BC.

From the Latin “aqua” means water and “marine” means sea and of no surprise since this gorgeous gemstone inspires all to visions of calming, pale blue waters.

Because of its water like colors, it has been called for hundreds of years “The sailor’s stone”. It was thought that it protected sailors and travelers overseas.

From the first-time aquamarine was discovered in India more than two thousand years ago, people have attributed various magical and spiritual properties to it. The Hindus used it to spark mental clarity and develop public speaking capabilities.

In medieval times, it was thought that this gem could prevent excessive water retention in the organism and improve intestinal transit of food. In the 19th century, the Chinese got more inventive and started carving small figurines into aquamarine stones.

Queen Elizabeth II owns a complete set aquamarine jewelry that was given to her as a gift from Brazilians at her coronation in 1953. She added some more items to the original set and she occasionally wears them at diplomatic meetings.

Aquamarine

Aquamarine Care and Cleaning

This precious stone is tough, durable and takes an excellent polish. It can be worn in rings and bracelets with minimal risk if the settings are designed to protect the gems.

Avoid steam cleaning or excess heat. Clear stones, called eye-clean, are free of inclusions to the naked eye and can be worn under most conditions.

Aquamarine mines

The Aquamarine gemstone is mined in Nigeria, Pakistan, Madagascar, and Mozambique but the finest Aquamarines are found in Brazil where the intensely deep blue gemstones are mined.

In the past, aquamarine was only available in small dimensions. But recently, mining in Brazil and Africa has led to the discovery of larger specimens that are now available to the jewelry industry.

 

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Bloodstone

The mineral aggregate heliotrope also known as bloodstone, is a cryptocrystalline mixture of quartz that occurs mostly as jasper (opaque) or sometimes as chalcedony (translucent). The “classic” bloodstone is opaque green jasper with red inclusions of hematite.

The red inclusions are supposed to resemble spots of blood, hence the name bloodstone. The name heliotrope derives from various ancient notions about the manner in which the mineral reflects light.

Bloodstone

Bloodstone Legends and Magical Properties

Bloodstone was called “stone of Babylon” by Albertus Magnus and he referred to several magical properties, which were attributed to it from Late Antiquity. Pliny the Elder (1st century) mentioned first that the magicians used it as a stone of invisibility.

Damigeron (4th century) wrote about its property to make rain, solar eclipse and its special virtue in divination and preserving health and youth. A Christian tradition states that the red spots come from blood falling upon the stone during the crucifixion of Jesus, as he was stabbed in the side by a Roman soldier. Ancient Roman soldiers believed that the stone had the ability to slow bleeding and wore it for this reason.

Bloodstone

A superstition in India holds that one can staunch bleeding by placing upon wounds and injuries after dipping it in cold water, which may have a scientific basis in the fact that iron oxide, contained in the stone, is an effective astringent. The Gnostics wore the stone as an amulet for longevity, for wealth and courage, to strengthen the stomach, and to dispel melancholy.

In the Middle Ages it was considered useful for animal husbandry. The ancient Greeks and Romans wore the stone to bring renown and favor, to bring endurance, and as a charm against the bite of venomous creatures. Greek and Roman athletes favored it as talisman for success in their games.

Source: Wikipedia

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