Stones that symbolize or are associated with the month of a person's birth in the Gregorian Calendar.
Most believed that the tradition of birthstones arose from the Breastplate of Aaron: a ceremonial religious garment set with twelve gemstones that represented the twelve tribes of Israel and also corresponded with the twelve signs of the zodiac and the twelve months of the year.
Occult literature links a number of precious stones with each of the twelve signs of the zodiac; these associations are used in talismanic magic (see Talismans), and in the production of amulets.
Birth stones are said to transmit a specific hidden power when used to make seals. They are also sometimes worn unsealed as magnetic centers, to attract their corresponding powers of the stars.
Birth stones listed by respective month:
January Jacinth, Garnet or Rose Quartz, symbolizing Constancy.
February Amethyst or Onyx, symbolizing Sincerity.
March Aquamarine or Bloodstone, symbolizing Courage.
April Diamond or Rock Crystal (Quartz), symbolizing Innocence.
May Emerald, Chrysoprase or Agate, symbolizing Love and Success.
June Alexandrite, Moonstone or Pearl, symbolizing Health and Longevity.
July Ruby, Jade or Carnelion, symbolizing Contentment.
August Peridot, Sardius, Sardonyx or Sapphire, symbolizing Married Happiness.
September Chrysolyte, Sapphire, Lapis Lazuli or Peridot, symbolizing Clear Thinking.
October Opal, Beryl, Tourmaline or Aquamarine, symbolizing Hope.
November Topaz, Citrine or Turquoise, symbolizing Fidelity.
December Chrysoprasus, Tanzanite, Zircon or Turquoise, symbolizing Prosperity.
Birthstones are likely to be a very personal choice, even to the point that people who do not like the color of their true birthstone will find any pretext to claim another. For example, the proper November birthstone is citrine or golden topaz, yet many people prefer blue topaz even though that gorgeous blue color is the result of treatment of a golden or colorless natural topaz crystal. Notice that sapphires come in any color of the rainbow except hues of red, reserved for rubies as do tourmalines and even diamonds. Garnets, usually thought of as red, actually are available in an assortment of colors including orange, green, and even the attractive deep purple color of grapes.
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Sources: (1) Spence, Lewis, An Encyclopedia of Occultism, Carol Publishing Group; (2) Dictionary of the Occult, Caxton Publishing; (3) Bonner, Campbell, Studies in Magical Amulets, University of Michigan Press; (4) Budge, E. A. Wallis, Amulets and Talismans, Carol Publishing Corporation; (5) Walker, Barbara G., The Book of Sacred Stones: Fact and Fallacy in the Crystal World, Harper & Row.
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