June is fast approaching, so I would love to share some of the history behind the month’s birthstone: Moonstone.
I would argue that moonstone is probably one of the most unique looking birthstones. Although moonstone has a cloudy, neutral base colour light is diffracted and makes the stone look almost as if the moon’s rays have been trapped inside the stone- hence the name Moonstone. This illusion is created because of very small layers of crystal within the stone, that trap light and create a multicoloured effect.
This can sometimes make the stone shimmer with blue as the light catches it.
The use of the gemstone in jewellery can be traced back to the ancient civilisations of Rome and Greece. The Romans treasured these particular gems, as they believed that they were created from solidified moon rays and they therefore believed that these stones were very important.
Both the Romans and the Greeks also associated the stone with their lunar deities; the Gods and Goddesses of the moon. These ancient societies are believed to be the first to discover and name this particular birthstone.
Moonstones are also important within other cultures. People who practice spirituality often believe that moonstone has many healing properties and brings good fortune, especially in love and business. The stone represents a new beginning and supposedly helps to promote compassion, the healing of emotional trauma and the deflection of negativity. Therefore, many people choose to wear moonstones in an attempt to live a stress-free and positive life.
Although the ancient civilisations are known for their fascination with Moonstone, the gem became extremely popular during the late Victorian Era (1885-1901). Many Victorian women owned moonstone jewellery and, although it was not necessarily expensive or rare, it was perceived as valuable and important to upper-class society. This was primarily because of Queen Victoria’s own fascination with semi-precious stones, and moonstones quickly became popular because of the interest that she had shown in them.
In the Victorian era, Moonstones, Opals and Pearls were the only stones that were seen as appropriate to pair with jewellery that also consisted of diamonds, so therefore many jewellery collectors have large amounts of moonstone rings, necklaces and various other Victorian antiques that contain both moonstones and diamonds.
I like to pair Moonstone with gold which really gives a lovely glow to the stone.