The Birthstone Guide

Birthstone List


June Birthstone - Pearl

Pearl is the June birthstone. Pearls are formed when an irritant, such as a piece of sand, enters an oyster. The oyster coats the piece of sand over and over and a pearl is formed. An arabic legend states that pearls are formed when dew drops fall into the ocean. Pearls have been associated with Venus, which was named after the Roman goddess of love.

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The iridescence shimmer shown by some pearls is due to the overlapping of layers laid down by the oyster. Pearls are usually white but can be tinted cream, pink, yellow, green, blue, brown, purple or black. Black pearls commonly called Black Tahitian Pearls are expensive due to their rarity.

There are two kinds of pearls, freshwater and saltwater. Freshwater pearls are formed by freshwater mussels. Most freshwater pearls today are farmed from mussels in China. Saltwater pearls are formed by oysters in the ocean, usually in protected oyster farms in lagoons. Akoya, South Sea and Tahitian are the three main kinds of saltwater pearls.

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