We’re almost through April and I haven’t covered the April birthstone yet. Let’s do something about that…
Traditionally, the birthstone for April is the diamond. I found a few articles stating there are two different birthstones for April depending on the zodiac symbol (people born between March 21 and April 19 are Aries and those born between April 20 and May 20 are Taurus); however, according to the American Gem Trade Association (http://www.agta.org), the birthstone for the month is diamond. I am going to trust the AGTA because they are considered an industry authority when it comes to gemstones.
Because of the cost associated with diamonds, alternative stones can be used in birthstone jewelry. The alternative stones used in place of diamonds typically include quartz and white spinel (pronounced spi-nel).
According to Merriam-Webster (http://www.merriam-webster.com), a diamond is crystallized carbon and is usually nearly colorless. It is the hardest known mineral and because of this, it’s not only used in jewelry, but is also used as an abrasive.
Diamonds have been used in both jewelry and cutting since ancient times. It is believed that most diamonds came from the area now known as India. Even today, most of the world’s diamonds come from India. Most diamonds are then traded in Antwerp, Belgium. Antwerp’s association with the diamond trade dates back to the late 15th century when new techniques for polishing and shaping the stones were developed there.
Recently, manufacturers have developed new methods of creating synthetic diamonds. These stones are grown in laboratories and they are visually identical to naturally-occurring diamonds. When purchasing diamonds, your jeweler should inform you whether or not your diamond is natural or synthetic.
All gemstones have at least a little folklore following them, and diamonds are no different. It is believed diamonds protect those who carry one bound to their left arm. It is also thought to ward off panic, pestilences, and enchantments.
Sadly, I do not have diamonds worked into any of my current jewelry designs, so I do not have photos to share with you. However, if you have questions, please let me know. If I cannot help you, I can direct you to a reliable information source.
Thank you for reading!