The name aquamarine comes from the Latin “aqua” = water and “mare” = sea. Thanks to its sea-blue color, it’s also been called “The Sailor’s Stone.” Legend has cast it as a sacred gem of Poseidon, god of the sea, and a magical treasure found in the lair of mermaids.
The breezy blue gemstone is perfect for birthdays teetering on the edge of springtime. In folklore, it is believed to have a pleasing, gentling effect, it was said to protect voyagers from tempests; to pacify the mind and give ease and fluency of speech; and to promote compassion and trust and bring good health.
Aquamarine has always been extremely popular, even though it is not particularly rare, and can still be found in many parts of the world. Its striking beauty has made it a favorite among royalty, jewelry connoisseurs, and modern designers alike. It was a favorite material among the gemstone carvers of ancient China (a tradition that is still carried on today).
Aquamarine is actually a kind of beryl, closely related to the emerald, and is often found with a strong green haze. Some aquamarines have an almost crystalline paleness, earning it the nickname “the poor man’s diamond” – though as a rule, the more intense the color, the higher the value. Most gemstone-grade aquamarines come from Brazil where the largest deposits are found. Other important sources are located in Africa, the Middle East, Russia, and the US. Aquamarines are very durable, but it is recommended to avoid cleaning methods that use heat or steam.
It is said that anyone can wear an aquamarine well, because its gentle color is so easy to blend with a color palette. It is an excellent match for a sparkling pastel style.
Read more about aquamarine and its companion birthstone for March, the bloodstone: