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Fun Facts about Festive December Birthstones

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December Birthstones: Turquoise, Tanzanite, and Zircon

December birthdays are extra special occasions. Not only do they take place around holiday festivities, but those born in December have three birthstones with which to celebrate: turquoise, tanzanite, and zircon. Below are some interesting and little known facts about these three festive gemstones…

  1. Turquoise is a blue-green mineral, with the chemical name of hydrated copper aluminum phosphate.
  2. The word turquoise is derived from the Old French word meaning Turkish stone.
  3. Some of the finest turquoise is known to come from Iran, but high-grade turquoise is also mined in Arizona and New Mexico.
  4. The ancient Egyptians used turquoise in jewelry, art, ornaments, and statues because they believed it had magical powers.
  5. Tanzanite is named after the East African state of Tazmania, the only place in the world where it can be found.
  6. The blue variety of tanzanite is called zoisite.
  7. Originally known as blue zoisite, the mineral’s name was changed to tanzanite by Henry Platt, Vice President of Tiffany & Co., because he felt zoisite sounded too much like suicide.
  8. In October 2002, the American Gem Trade Association officially named tanzanite as the third December birthstone.
  9. Zirconium silicate is the chemical name for zircon.
  10. The name zircon is derived from the Arabic words “zar” and “gun,” which means gold and color.
  11. Today, zircon is primarily mined in Cambodia, Thailand, and Vietnam.
  12. In the Middle Ages, many people believed zircons could relieve pain, induce hunger, protect travelers from disease and injury, ensure a warm welcome, and promote restful sleep.

If you’re looking for a gift for someone born in December, or you are looking for jewelry to give  that’s perfect for the holidays, Adina by Empire Jewelers has an extensive collection of beautiful vintage and estate jewelry at true wholesale prices. Shop today for all your gift-giving  as well as a wide variety of precious and semi-precious gemstone jewelry. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

 
 
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