Sapphire: The September Birthstone

Posted on Friday, September 15th, 2017 at 3:08 pm by Sarah

One of our favorite gems, the sapphire, is the birthstone of September. Birthstones are gemstones that have historically become associated with a specific birth month, as well as a unique meaning. In fact, the tradition of birthstones can be traced back to ancient civilizations that often believed these stones had magnificent powers. However, today they are seen more as a personalized fashion statement, than their previous symbolism.

The Basics of Sapphires

It is believed that the word “sapphire” is derived from the Greek word “sappheiros," which means "blue stone." Despite their traditional blue appearance, sapphires are also found a variety of almost every color including violet, dark gray, orange, yellow, pink, green and black. One of the rarest colors of sapphire is called “Padparadscha,” meaning “Lotus color.” It is both orange and pink simultaneously and quite sought after. Sapphires are known as corundums, which are in the same family as the ruby. In fact, the only difference between a ruby and a sapphire is their color. These beautiful stones have been used throughout history for medicinal reasons, jewelry, and many. The most common places to find sapphires around the world include Burma, Sri Lanka, Australia, Thailand, Western Cambodia, China, Nigeria, and Kashmir. They are also found right here in the United States, with Montana's sapphires being one of the most prized!


The Mythology Behind Sapphires

Centuries ago, some people believed that sapphires bring fulfillment, joy, prosperity, inner peace and beauty. In fact, some people even wore them believing that they could ward off illness or even as protection during travels. In the middle ages, it was commonly believed that a sapphire was able to suppress a person's negative thoughts. It has also been thought to cure some ailments. For example, in ancient Persia, it was ground up and utilized as an all-purpose medication. Even Russia's Ivan the Terrible believed that sapphires strengthened the heart and muscles, as well as endowed the wearer with courage. Others thought it could serve as an anecdote for poison and even that it kills snakes on the spot. While we may not believe that these beautiful gems hold metaphysical properties, it’s intriguing to learn the significance these gemstones had to civilizations of the past.


Sapphires In History

Sapphires are a common precious stone to be featured in many of the world's royal jewels. In fact, one of Queen Elizabeth II's favorite tiaras features sapphires. She received it as a marriage gift in 1947 from her father, King George VI. In his honor, the name of these royal jewels is the George VI Victorian Suite. In addition to the tiara, it includes earrings and a necklace which also adorn a number of sapphires. The current Queen of England isn't the only royalty to fancy a sapphire tiara. She is joined by Queen Silvia Of Sweden, Queen Máxima of the Netherlands, late Queen Victoria of England, and Princess (as well as former Olympian) Charlene of Monaco. Even the Louvre has a royal sapphire tiara, included in the Queen Marie-Amélie’s Sapphire and Diamond Parure, that they bought in 1985 from the royal French family.

Even the beloved, late Princess Diana of England had a variety of sapphire royal jewels that she wore including her engagement ring featuring a 12-carat oval blue Ceylon sapphire set in 18-karat white gold and surrounded by 14 solitaire diamonds. She also often wore a sapphire broach gifted to her by the mother Queen. After Princess Diana's death, her sons Princes William and Prince Harry each selected a memento of their mother's. Prince Harry chose her sapphire engagement ring and William selected Diana's gold Cartier Tank Francaise watch. They would eventually exchange mementos and in fall of 2010, Prince William proposed to Catherine Middleton with his mother's engagement ring. In fact, sapphires are historically a very popular jewel among royalty.

Sapphires are a beautiful stone that has been coveted for many centuries. Today it is often gifted in birthstone jewelry as a token of loyalty, faithfulness, and sincerity. At Jeweler’s Touch, we have a variety of birthstone jewelry, including pieces adorned with sapphires, which we offer our customers. For more information about garnets or the pieces we offer, please feel free to contact us or visit our store today. Our expert staff would love to help you discover the perfect piece for your jewelry needs.