Understanding The History Of The Birthstone Necklace

Birthstones. Most people have at least one piece of jewelry, such as a necklace, that has their birthstone on it. Yet they may not know the history of the birthstone. The only thing they may know about is that there are certain precious and semi-precious stones associated with each month of the year. This stone is supposed to be sacred as it is to imbue the wearer with all the special powers or attributes associated with each stone.

History of the Birthstone

The history of the birthstone can be hard to trace, since there have been many different stones attributed to the different months of the year. Some historians believe that the birthstones date back to the 1st century and the High Priest of Israelites’ breastplate. Each stone is to represent the 12 tribes of Israel as each name of the tribe was inscribed onto the stone.

Some people believe the stones on the breastplate represent the 12 months of the year. Other people have said it is to represent the 12 signs of the zodiac. During the 8th and 9th century, it is said that religious treatises associated each stone with one of the Apostles. In ancient folklore, the stones are alleged to have had healing and therapeutic properties as people would wear necklaces and jewelry with the stone during its designated month to enhance these properties that are endowed into the wearer.

Over the years, different stones have been associated with the different months as the stones rotated in and out of style. This circumstance was due in part to the availability of the birthstone. In 1912, the National Association of Jewelers created a standardized list for which stones are associated with each month.

This list was updated in 1952 by the Jewelry Industry Council of America to include 3 additional birthstones for the months of June (alexandrite), November (citrine) and October (pink tourmaline). They also switched the primary and secondary stones for the month of March and replaced December’s birthstone of lapiz with zircon. The latest birthstone change happened in 2002 with the addition of tanzanite as another alternate stone for December.

Birthstones By Month

When you are looking for a birthstone necklace, you have many choices. You may get one with the stones associated with your special month, or play it safe and find a necklace that has all of the 12 birthstones so you can take advantage of all the healing and special properties the stone is suppose to give to you. To find out what birthstone is related to your birth month, check out the following list.

  • January – Garnet
  • February – Amethyst
  • March – Aquamarine and Bloodstone
  • April – Diamonds
  • May – Emerald
  • June – Pearl and Alexandrite
  • July – Ruby
  • August – Peridot
  • September – Sapphire
  • October – Pink Tourmaline and Opal
  • November – Topaz and Citrine
  • December – Turquoise, Tanzanite and Zircon

From bestowing love and courage on a wearer to healing them of blood disorders or insomnia, birthstones have become a part of our lives and hold a sacred meaning when we wear a necklace with these beautiful gems.

+Laura has a keen sense for rare, beautiful finds in fashion, jewelry and home art and decor check out styleoutsidethebox