Pearl is the birthstone for the month of June. Associated with purity, innocence, and humility, it’s no wonder that people give pearls as wedding gifts. They are “sweet simplicity”.
Pearls have been popular since the start of time. They are highly desirable jewellery pieces because they are rare and change colour based on the surrounding light. Women of all ages love pearls because they are a timeless wardrobe staple.
All pearls, other than ones manufactured in freshwater (also known as cultured) originate from bodies of water such as the ocean, rivers, and lakes. In fact, during ancient times, people from the Middles East believed that pearls came from the heavens. The Chinese, on the other hand, believed that pearls came from the brain of a dragon. During the Christopher Columbus era, it was thought that molluscs formed pearls from dew drops.
Regardless of the ancient beliefs, pearls are organic gems that grow either in salt or freshwater inside an oyster or a mussel.
Pearls are believed to have many beneficial properties that help ease indigestion discomfort. They also offer life longevity and prosperity. In addition, middle Eastern physicians suggested that pearl powder improved eyesight, quieted nervous tremors, and eased depression.
Natural pearls, as the name implies, are formed naturally.
On the other hand, cultured pearls are made by human intervention. During the last few decades, pearl fishing has decimated natural pearl production. Because of that, cultured pearl production has become so popular and accounts for most sales today.
Cultured pearls come in many different colours, shapes, and sizes. You can find pearls in jewellery such as rings, necklaces, earrings, pendants, and bracelets.
As a final note, one of the most famous pearls is 50.56 carat in weight, is the size of a pigeon’s egg, and discovered in the Gulf of Panama in the 1500s. Richard Burton eventually gifted it to Elizabeth Taylor in 1969. The pearl was auctioned in 2011 by Christie’s of New York for $11.8 million.