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Gemstone Meanings: The Surprising Symbolism of Your Jewels

We’ve all heard that diamonds symbolize true love, but what are the symbolic meanings of other popular gemstones? From ancient times to today, gems of every hue have been imbued with significance and special powers by cultures around the world. Here are the legends associated with some of the world’s most treasured jewels:



Blue has long been considered the color of fidelity, and sapphires were once the preferred gem for engagement rings (before diamonds claimed that honor in the early 20th century).


Legends have said that placing an emerald under your tongue gives you the ability to foresee the future (but we do not recommend that!), and that emerald protects against evil spells and can cure disease.



Ancient Hindus believed that those who offered rubies to the god Krishna would be emperors in a future life. People in India and Burma have also believed that rubies offered safety and peace, and medieval Europeans thought that these gems guaranteed health, wealth, wisdom, and success in love.


Because of its color the ancient Greeks associated amethyst with the wine god Bacchus, and believed that the gem could prevent drunkenness. Amethyst has also been thought to keep the wearer clear-headed and quick-witted.


The Egyptians thought that peridot protected against nightmares and brought the wearer confidence, good luck and health. In fact, it’s believed that some of Cleopatra’s famous emeralds were actually peridots.


Aquamarine is believed to provide courage, mental clarity and good health. Because of its association with water, aquamarine has been said to keep sailors safe at sea.



In ancient China, pearls were believed to protect against fire, and in Europe they were associated with chastity and purity. Pearls retain that association with innocence today.


Garnet has long been associated with clergy and nobility. In ancient Egypt the pharaohs wore red garnet necklaces, and in ancient Rome rings with carved garnets were used to stamp the wax on important documents.


This gem is also known as “healing quartz,” because legend has it that citrine promotes vitality and energy in whomever wears it. And according to the Chinese feng shui philosophy, citrine creates wealth and abundance.


Because opals can exhibit so many different colors within a single stone, it has long been thought to possess supernatural powers. In ancient Rome, this gem symbolized love and hope. The ancient Greeks believed opals gave their owners the gift of prophecy and guarded them from disease. Europeans have long considered the gem a symbol of hope, purity, and truth.  Once, it was thought to have the power to preserve the life and color of blond hair.



Folk wisdom says that zircon has the power to relieve pain, protect travelers and prevent nightmares. In the Middle Ages, this gem was thought to induce sound sleep, drive away evil spirits, and promote riches, honor, and wisdom.


Topaz symbolizes love and fidelity, and is said to bestow strength and intelligence on the person who wears it, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac.


From ancient times to today people have ascribed special powers to turquoise. Native American tribes of the Southwest wore turquoise as an amulet thought to offer protection, and in ancient Persia (and modern day Iran) some believe that wearing turquoise can ward off the “evil eye” (other people’s ill will).

Final Thoughts

Do you buy into the idea that gemstones have special meanings or powers? Do you wear a gem as a good luck charm? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter, or in the comments section!

Sources: Gemological Institute of America, American Gemological Society


Marion Says:
June 2nd, 2016 at 10:29 am

True or False: It is “bad” luck to wear
a gemstone that is not your Birthstone? Especially OPAL

Jessica gabriel Says:
July 2nd, 2016 at 9:48 am

I wear a turquoise since it’s my birthstone. Is it ok. I need something that will draw wealth and success to as I,m having a lot of bad luck and my money keeps going and I’m left with nothing . Let me know also I have a lot of gemstone rings and earrings like garnet, Oman alexandrite jade diamond but wear this occasionally whe I go out. The only ring with turquoise I wear every day 24/7

traceymccreadie Says:
July 3rd, 2016 at 11:38 am

I like the rings

Patrick Lawlor Says:
July 8th, 2016 at 3:43 pm

Very nice and interesting.

Patrick Lawlor Says:
July 8th, 2016 at 3:45 pm

Very educational to our clients.

Karen Says:
July 21st, 2016 at 6:04 pm

Marion, so interesting that you should say that about the Opal. My birthstone is the turquoise but I would like to wear a white opal. I’ve made many friends and cherish everyone of them. I liken an opal to meeting someone. At first you see a blank page but as you get to know them you see their colours. Their “true blue” causes. What they feel strong about. In my cause that would be teaching children. The things that they love … “red”. My case — dogs. The natural beauties of this world would be the green. Me — waterfalls. Yellow is a happy colour. What makes that friend happy. I love to see my friends laugh. I don’t own an opal but I consider my friends “gems”.

EDsouza Says:
July 27th, 2016 at 6:45 pm

I believe in gem stones, Priest Aaron, Prophet Moses’ brother, used to wear gem stones as per Holy Bible

scott Says:
August 30th, 2016 at 2:11 pm

is Pearl the month of june and what as a male does wearing a black pearl mean

Douglas Malott Says:
September 20th, 2016 at 10:33 am

I noticed that there was nothing mentioned about my birthstone Alexandrite, as I was born in the month of June. Could you please tell me more?

sherri koss Says:
October 28th, 2016 at 2:43 pm

i want a ring with my birthstone january

Daniel Says:
November 6th, 2016 at 2:28 pm

I do not believe that gems give anything except the beauty of them. I believe that supernatural powers are just nothing more then an illusion of thoughts.

December 12th, 2016 at 11:20 am


Barbara Grant Says:
January 10th, 2017 at 10:02 am

I had cancelled all postings from this site and was told within 24 hours it would be cancelled. 2 weeks later I am still getting your postings. PLEASE STOP SENDING POSTS-CANCEL THE POSTINGS

Johan Says:
February 11th, 2017 at 3:25 pm

Very interesting

Roger Says:
February 23rd, 2017 at 6:13 am

Russian alexandrite (rare)? meaning..

Katie Says:
March 19th, 2017 at 1:05 pm

I was born in October, so my birthstone is the Opal. Should I get an opal to wear around college soon?

Jaisa maryines Says:
March 24th, 2017 at 9:16 pm


Jaisa maryines Says:
March 24th, 2017 at 9:17 pm

Great survey

Lois Says:
March 25th, 2017 at 4:00 am

Yes, I also would like information on Alexandrite as it is my birthstone as well. Thanks

Leah Lavoie Says:
March 25th, 2017 at 8:58 pm

In opal. I always thought i was special. Lol. Just not in beauty. I am blonde tho.

Leah Lavoie Says:
March 25th, 2017 at 9:02 pm

Marion, i think that it is bad luck. ESPECIALLY opal.

vir bone Says:
April 3rd, 2017 at 12:29 pm

I am wore Malachite almost for the 46 years to shed away my Kidney Pain problem, the day I put it in my ring finger the ruler and constant pain vanished, I am Happy giving this stone to the pain sufferers free of cost considering helping human being a mean paying thanks to the Nature making this stone a remedy of kidney pain,,

Beckie stephens Says:
April 4th, 2017 at 10:11 pm

Likes them

Anita Harris Says:
April 7th, 2017 at 4:50 pm

Some places say that my birthstone is alexandrite, while others say that it’s pearl. My birthday is June 24th. Can you tell me without a doubt which is my birthstone?

Rinit Says:
April 12th, 2017 at 8:31 am

Anita Harris, both alexandrite and pearl are your birthstone. Most months have 2 stones. My birthday is in October. My Mom bought me a daughter’s pride ring with diamond for her birthday April, alexandrite for my Dad, June and pink (the stone was never identified but a pink stone is shown in all of the guides) for my birthday, October. A few years later she bought me another one with diamond, pearl and opal. Both rings were correct. I believe the rule is one is considered a stone while the other is a gem for the month.

Kathleen Says:
April 27th, 2017 at 2:10 pm

I got my friend a bracelet to ward off evil eye she says it has changed her life.

Nbd Says:
May 2nd, 2017 at 9:15 pm

I love iy

Rina Says:
May 13th, 2017 at 10:28 pm

What about Alexandrianite there are two gemstones for Gemini they are pearls and Alexandrianite

Carly Says:
May 16th, 2017 at 10:45 pm

Love it

trip Says:
May 20th, 2017 at 6:52 pm

Really nice

Chelsea Andrade Says:
May 25th, 2017 at 12:47 pm

This was awesome

lea Says:
May 26th, 2017 at 10:17 am

Very nice wish I could afford all of them

lea Says:
May 26th, 2017 at 10:19 am

Very cool

Bye bye Says:
June 6th, 2017 at 10:42 pm

Very nice information.!

Bye bye Says:
June 6th, 2017 at 10:43 pm

Very nice information.! I’ve never heard this information before I really enjoyed.

Emily Says:
June 10th, 2017 at 11:44 pm

I love all these butiful gems

Adrianna Says:
June 21st, 2017 at 7:48 pm

Love the um the um um… the EMARLAD

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