Pearl and Alexandrite – The June Birthstones

Pearl - The June BirthstoneThe June Birthstone is officially the Pearl according to the excerpt from Tiffany’s poem above.

However as in other months there is more than one choice for anyone with a birthday in June.

Alexandrite is also considered and like natural pearl is quite rare since it changes colour depending on lighting..

First according to popular tradition, let’s take a look at the Pearl:

The history of the Pearl as a Birthstone.

Due to their natural beauty, pearls have been popular in the manufacture of jewelry for hundreds of years. Ancient Greeks believed that they were the “tears of gods” Other cultures around the world had similar myths which also claimed the gem to be the tears of various creatures including mermaids,nymphs or even the moon.

As natural pearls of good quality are so rare, they were only used by the rich.

Since the early 20th century, saltwatwater pearls have been cultured in Asia. Consequently, cultured pearls have largely replaced natural pearls making them much more affordable for everyone.

Properties of the June Birthstone

Pearls used for the manufacture are the product of clams such as mussels and oysters.

As mentioned above most are made by introducing a piece of shell or round bead into pearl oysters or mussels. Layers of calcium carbonate develop around this object to form the gemstone which does not require polishing.

The Persian Gulf is the main source of natural pearls and some are still harvested by Australian pearl diving fleets in the Indian Ocean.

Freshwater cultured pearls are also available from China. Sea pearls are mostly cultured in Australia, the Philippines and Indonesia.

Beware of cheap imitations

As it is common for any expensive or rare item to be copied, the Pearl is no exception. Many imitation pearls find their way onto the market, so if you are buying ‘the real thing’, there are a few things that you should know. Some imitation pearls are made of mother of Pearl, coral or conch and called shell pearls. Others are simply made of glass and coated with fish scales to give then the desired luster. However this is short lived and they do not possess the same qualities or weight of a genuine Pearl. There are also many plastic varieties which are normally obvious fakes just by looking with the naked eye. Natural pearls are the most rare and expensive. They can be distinguished from cultured pearls via X-ray and should be appraised by a professional jeweler.

Check below for the current range of cultured pearl rings available from our affiliates. Simply click on a photo to see more details.


 

Alexandrite as alternative birthstone for June

Often described as “emerald by day, ruby by night,” alexandrite is a very rare colour changing mineral called chrysoberyl. It was originally discovered in the Ural mountains of Russia in the early 19th century. This gemstone is very valuable and can also be found in Sri Lanka, East Africa, and Brazil.

The colour of Alexandrite can literally be anything from red to green and depends on the source of light. It received it’s name after Czar Alexander II who was assassinated in 1881.

Below are some fine examples of this alternative June Birthstone available from our affiliates:

 


If you are lucky enough to have a birthday in June you may well receive one of these very rare and treasured rings in the future. Please remember to share this post with your friends on Social Media by using the buttons below.

I have been working in the fashion and jewellery industry since the mid 1970s when I started work in a seaside gift shop selling costume jewellery and fashion accessories. I worked for many years in the UK as a musician and electronics engineer and started my own business in 1995 as the owner of Ringmania.
After living in Phuket, Thailand for 15 years, I am now based in Sheffield UK since July 2019
Please contact me if you have any questions about Ringmania or any of our products/services.

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