BIRTHSTONES

Just about everyone knows what his or her birthstone is. Why is that? Because people still enjoy the folklore associated with the tradition of the birthstone. They like believing that wearing a birthstone brings them good luck and protects them.

Early civilization as far back as the Assyrians (1400 BC) invested rare and beautiful gemstones with magical properties. Some minerals were thought to contain a force or possess certain values and powers. For instance, amethyst was said to prevent intoxication.

Tradition associates a gem with each sign of the zodiac based on a color system. Color was thought to unleash the power attributed to the stone. In time, birthstones became associated with calendar months rather than the zodiac. And people began to select birthstones in colors other than the original. The Roman, Arabic, Jewish, Polish, Russian and Italian lists were all different.

LIST OF BIRTHSTONES COMMONLY USED TODAY