Aquamarine Birthstone Jewellery

Monday, 26 February 2024
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Aquamarine Birthstone Jewellery

Aquamarine Birthstone Jewellery

For those born in the month of March the stunning aquamarine is designated as the gem best suited for a March birthstone ring. The jewellery is crafted using aquamarine, is not only universally flattering, the stone itself also comes along with a fascinating history – and meanings – that make it a great addition to any March birthstone jewellery collection.

What is Aquamarine?

Aquamarine is a popular gemstone that belongs to the beryl family, which also includes other well-known gemstones such as emerald and morganite.

Aquamarine PendantAquamarine has the chemical formula Be3Al2(SiO3)6. The crystal structure of aquamarine is composed of beryllium, aluminium, silicon, and oxygen atoms. It also contains small amounts of other elements, such as iron and manganese, which give the gemstone its distinctive blue colour.

The blue-green colour of aquamarine is due to the presence of iron ions in its crystal structure. The red and yellow wavelengths of light in the visible spectrum are taken up by the iron ions. This leaves the blue and green wavelengths, which give aquamarine its colours, to shine through. The intensity of the colour can vary depending on the concentration of iron ions and other impurities in the crystal.

Aquamarine can also be heat-treated to enhance its colour. When heated to a temperature of 400-450°C, the iron ions in the crystal structure become more concentrated, resulting in a deeper and more intense colour. Heat treatment can also be used to remove any yellow or brown tones from the gemstone, resulting in a purer and more desirable blue-green colour.

In addition to its colour, the chemical composition of aquamarine also gives it several physical and chemical properties. It has a hardness of 7.5-8 on the Mohs scale, making it a durable gemstone that is suitable for everyday wear, perfect for a March birthstone ring that you would prefer to never take off!

What Colours are Aquamarines?

Aquamarine RingAlthough generally referred to casually as a blue gemstone, the colour range of aquamarine can vary from pale blue to deep blue green. The most valuable and sought-after aquamarines have a rich, deep blue-green colour, often referred to as “Santa Maria” blue after the famous Brazilian mine that produced the finest quality stones for many years. These stones have a strong saturation of colour, without being too dark or too light.

Aquamarines can also have a pale blue or blue-green colour, which is less saturated than the deeper shades. These stones are often lighter in colour and are more commonly found in smaller sizes. They are still beautiful gemstones, and when it comes to March birthstone jewellery are sometimes preferred by those looking for a softer, more pastel blue.

It’s worth noting that the colour of aquamarine can vary depending on the lighting conditions. In natural daylight, the stone will have a different appearance than when viewed under artificial light. This is something to consider when choosing March birthstone jewellery, as the stone’s colour can look different in different lighting environments.

Where is Aquamarine Mined?

Aquamarine NecklaceAquamarine is found in many parts of the world, with some of the most important sources being Brazil, Madagascar, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Russia. The quality and quantity of aquamarine varies depending on the location, with some mines producing more valuable and sought-after stones than others.

Brazil is the largest producer of aquamarine, accounting for more than 80% of the world’s supply. The most famous deposits are found in the states of Minas Gerais and Espirito Santo, where the finest quality stones are often referred to as “Santa Maria” aquamarine. These stones have a rich, deep blue-green colour and are highly valued by collectors and jewellery designers.

The aquamarines from Madagascar are often lighter in colour than those from Brazil, but they can still be very beautiful and desirable, while those from Nigeria can have a greenish tint and are often cut into large, impressive gemstones.

Aquamarines from Pakistan commonly have a deep blue-green colour and are often cut into elegant emerald shapes while aquamarines from Russia are often pale blue in colour.

Caring for Aquamarine jewellery is simple and straight forward. Check it out here.

Aquamarine in Legend, Myth and History

Whether you choose an aquamarine as a March birthstone ring, or as other aquamarine birthstone jewellery, or are simply attracted to its beautiful blue colour, if you are like many gemstone fans you like to know more about the stone’s place in legend, myth and history.

Legends and Myths About Aquamarine

Some of the most famous legends surrounding aquamarines involve those most magical creatures of the sea, known as mermaids.

Many cultures have many mermaid tales in their mythology. In fact, almost all maritime cultures tell tales of sirens or sea nymphs.

Aquamarine was frequently mentioned in mermaid mythology in ancient Rome and Greece. The sea blue stone was thought to have washed ashore after leaking out of mermaids’ treasure chests by the Romans in particular. They believed the stones were blessed by the sea god Neptune, which would bring good fortune and protection to anyone who found them.

For this reason, long before they were considered March birthstones, early seafarers wore aquamarine pendants with Neptune’s picture carved on them while they were at sea. They considered the stones to be a talisman that shielded them from oceanic storms. They relied on them to keep them from drowning. Some even wore them to prevent motion sickness at sea.

Some of these early seafarers also thought that mermaid tail scales were formed of aquamarines. They were certain that the gem contained all the magic and mystique of the sea and its Mer people, and that by wearing an aquamarine themselves, some of all of that might be transferred to them!

Another ancient Greek legend tells of a group of sailors who were stranded on an island with no fresh water. In desperation, they prayed to the gods for help, and in response, the goddess of the sea, Amphitrite, created a spring of fresh water by touching the ground with her trident. As a token of gratitude, the sailors offered her gifts, including a beautiful aquamarine, which she then treasured above all her other gems and trinkets.

In ancient Rome the aquamarine was associated with the goddess of love and beauty, Venus. It was believed that wearing aquamarine jewellery would attract love, affection, and promote marital harmony.

Aquamarine’s Historical Significance

Aquamarine has been highly valued throughout history for its beauty and symbolism. In the Middle Ages, it was believed to have healing properties, especially for eye diseases. It was also thought to have a cooling effect on the body, making it a popular choice for hot climates.

During the Renaissance period, aquamarine became a powerful symbol of wealth and status, and was often incorporated into the jewellery of the nobility.

The gemstone was also used in the creation of religious artefacts, such as crosses and rosaries, and was believed to have protective properties against evil spirits.

There have been some pieces of jewellery created using beautiful aquamarines that are so impressive they themselves are considered history.

The Dom Pedro Aquamarine – This aquamarine is one of the largest and most famous in the world, weighing in at an impressive 10,363 carats. It was discovered in Brazil in the late 1980s and was eventually purchased by the Smithsonian Institution. The gemstone is named after Dom Pedro, the former Emperor of Brazil, who was an avid collector of gemstones.

The Hirsch Aquamarine – This aquamarine is a stunning 109-carat stone that was originally owned by a German jeweller named Otto Hirsch. It was later sold to the American industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, who donated it to the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

The Logan Sapphire and Aquamarine Brooch – This brooch, which is part of the collection at the Smithsonian Institution, features a stunning 422-carat aquamarine as its centrepiece. The aquamarine is surrounded by 20 sapphires, ranging in colour from light blue to deep blue.

The Queen Elizabeth Aquamarine – This aquamarine is a 23-carat stone that was gifted to Queen Elizabeth II by the President and First Lady of Brazil during a state visit in the 1950s. The Queen later had the stone set into a brooch, which she wore on many occasions.

The Aquamarine Tiara of Princess Grace of Monaco – This tiara, which was worn by Princess Grace of Monaco on several occasions, features a stunning aquamarine centrepiece. The tiara was designed by Van Cleef & Arpels and was given to the Princess as a wedding gift from her husband, Prince Rainier III.

In modern times, aquamarine remains a popular gemstone for all kinds of jewellery. Its association with love, protection, and good fortune continues to make it a meaningful and cherished symbol for many people, not just those born in March, although as a March birthstone ring choice it’s hard to think of one that could be better!

Author Bio

Jill Hansen runs Anastasia’s Of Broome and is a highly recognised expert in both the fields of South Sea Pearls and Diamonds. Jill trained in seeding pearls in the Cook Islands by Japanese Pearl Technicians, and established a wholesale pearl business selling pearls all over the world. She pioneered the combination of pearls and diamonds to create Lust™ Pearls, a unique fusion of these two beautiful gemstones. Jill holds the prestigious recognition of being an Antwerp Diamond Broker for selecting and sourcing Diamonds direct from the diamond capital of the world, Antwerp. She is a diamond expert and is happy to use and impart her knowledge to help customers make informed decisions.

Not sure what your birthstone is check out our article on all monthly gemstones here.

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