Birthstones have a long and venerable tradition. Some experts believe the concept dates back to biblical times. According to legend, they originated with Aaron, the brother of Moses, whose breastplate bore 12 stones representing the 12 tribes of Israel. The current list of birthstones, the one we use today, was first compiled in 1912, over 100 years ago.
Each stone has its own history as well. Countless legends and beliefs have grown up around the gems in this list. Nearly every culture has created its own unique folklore—stories, symbols, and beliefs that give meaning to each precious stone. Some stones are thought to symbolize purity and innocence (pearl); others are believed to have special healing powers (sapphire); still others are thought to have fallen from the sky in the form of lightning (opal).
Today, people wear birthstones for any number of reasons: to express their own individuality; to harness their gem’s special powers; to symbolize virtue; or simply to enjoy the stunning beauty of these natural wonders. No matter why you wear it, you can find gorgeous birthstone jewelry for great prices at GEM Pawnbrokers. Visit one of our many locations throughout New York, or browse through our online gallery to see our impressive collection of unique birthstone jewelry.
Want to learn more about the history and legends surrounding your own birthstone? Take a look at our infographic.