A young Roman soldier presents his wife with a sapphire as he leaves on a journey to ensure she will remain devoted to him while he is gone.
A nobleman from India reaches inside a pouch worn next to his skin to touch the ruby within it to provide protection from harm as he fights in battle.
A servant holds an aquamarine over an English prince to relieve the suffering from a terrible stomache ache.
Steeped in myths and legends, countless beliefs and fascinating tales are related about the mysterious powers of gems and precious stones. Wearing a blue sapphire, for instance, is believed to bring you a fortune, love, and release from prison!
Around the world and throughout the ages, people have noticed and appreciated the beauty of gemstones, often assigning these gems special powers. But how did certain gemstones become associated with the months of the year?
Many historians think that the first written record comes from the book of Exodus in the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. Here, the Breastplate of Aaron, the Hebrews' high priest is described as having twelve specific gems, one for each of Israel's twelve tribes. For those who are interested in gemstones associated with the Twelve Tribes of Israel or the Twelve Apostles I have included a link just above and at left.
Because ancient people did not always classify gemstones by mineral species like we do, there is some debate about which gemstones were set in the breastplate and why. Because of this, different cultures around the world have developed different birth stone lists. The modern day list that you know is only the most recent list: some older lists still exist. Some also argue that the proper way to assign gemstones is according to astrological sign and not month. It is more fun to choose the gemstone that speaks to you from all the possibilities.
Since ancient times, gems and precious stones have been associated with the zodiac signs and continue to be credited with possessing power to bring luck and change the course of an individual's life by influencing our attitudes, behavior, and environment.