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Guide to Choosing Jewellery

Birthstones

Birthstones (or month stones) are associated with the month a person was born, but some people also choose to wear whatever particular stone applies to the current month. The generally accepted modern listing for birthstones is as follows:

Because these gemstones are associated with the months of the year, if you were choosing an anniversary present for someone, you might like to select the stone associated with the month of their anniversary date. Some people may adhere quite strongly to only wearing their birthstone but these days many people simply choose the gemstone they prefer or wear a selection of different stones.

There is also a list of birthstones that relates to the days of the week. These are:

There are also other groupings of birthstones, including traditional, cultural and zodiacal listings. There is a mix of precious and semi-precious gemstones in each list. As you can see, each birthdate can have several different stones associated with it, so while it’s a good place to start when choosing a gift for yourself or someone else, it is by no means the only choice you have.

The meaning of gemstones

There is a Victorian-era "language" of gemstones, where certain words or ideas are represented by wearing or giving particular gems. Some of these are:

Sometimes gemstones are combined in a single piece of jewellery, such as set in a row across a ring, with the first initials of the gems spelling a word. The most common in times gone by were "regard" (ruby, emerald, garnet, amethyst, ruby, diamond) and "dearest" (diamond, emerald, amethyst, ruby, emerald, sapphire, topaz).

We hope you've found this guide useful.

Be sure to check out our other jewellery guides for more information.