Pearl – The Birthstone of June
The pearl is the gemstone of the 3rd and 30th anniversary.
Pearls are very much associated with the feminine world. It has its origin in the water. The round shape has it connected to the moon.
The pearl represents purity, love and also sexuality.
It is also associated with hidden wisdom, patience and peace.
Pearls have been throughout the ages a sign of wealth.
In China the pearl was believed to have the power to grant wishes.
In Chinese Taoist symbolism the dragon is often found guarding the Flaming Pearl which represents spiritual perfection.
The Color Meaning of the Pearl
Pearls come in different colors and each color symbolizes a different meaning.
The blue pearl was traditionally associated with love.
The brown pearl was worn for protection.
The pink pearl was thought to promote fame and success.
Black pearls was used to enhance wealth. This is the color to wear if you want to feel rich and attract prosperity.
The white pearl was a symbol of beauty, purity and new beginnings. This is perfect for just about any day.
The new day is a fresh start granting you wonderful new possibilities.
The female name Margarete means pearl. It comes from several sources: Persian “Morvared”, in French Marguerite. We also find the same meaning in Latin: Margarita and in the Greek form Margarites.
The word pearl comes from the Latin word “pilula” which means ball. Another word which stems from the same root is pill.
Cultured, Natural and Synthetic Pearls
Synthetic pearls are as the name suggests fake pearls. They may be very pretty, but are none the less not the real thing. It may be difficult to see the difference. You may try to rub the pearl on your teeth. A synthetic version will be smooth. That is not the case of a real pearl.
True pearls are produced inside a mollusk. Saltwater pearls can be found in an oyster called Pinctada. This oyster is not edible. Freshwater pearls are found in mussels called Unio.
When a foreign object, for example a grain of sand finds its way into a mollusk it becomes an irritation. As it is impossible to get the grain of sand out, the mollusk will release a substance called nacre to cover the grain of sand.
It will continue to do this for several years. About four or five years later this grain of sand which has gradually been covered with nacre has become a gorgeous pearl.
To protect the Coral Reefs many countries have banned diving for pearls. Almost all pearls sold today are cultured. They are grown under supervision. That does not make them less real.
No two real pearls are identical.
Every real pearl is unique.
There will always be a tiny difference.
Pearls in Ancient Greece and Rome
The Ancient Greek goddess of love, lust and beauty named Aphrodite was born in the foams of the water on the shore of Cyprus.
She was known to wear pearls. Her equivalent in Ancient Rome was the goddess Venus. This makes pearls also a strong symbol of love.
The Ancient Greeks would give pearls to a bride (if they could afford them) because they believed this precious jewel would ensure a happy marriage.
(Queen Elizabeth II wore a beautiful pearl necklace on her wedding day November 20, 1947. Her wedding dress also contained 10 000 seed pearls)
The Ancient Romans wore them to show off their wealth and make sure everyone was aware of their social status.
Both men and women wore pearls.
In some areas of Ancient Rome they believed pearls could restore the sanity of lunatics.
Pearls in the Bible
The Parable of the Pearl
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it. “ Matthew 13:45-46, King James Version
Then we have the words of Jesus from his Sermon on the Mount:
“Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.” Matthew 7:6
This is a reminder to not offer something to someone who does not appreciate it.
In Revelation about the new heaven and new earth the twelve gates are told to be made of pearls. This has been popularized as the Pearly Gates of Heaven meaning the gates the righteous will pass through to reach heaven.
“And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, transparent as glass.” Revelation 21:21
Pearls in the Qur’an
It is written in the Qur’an that the inhabitants of paradise will be adorned with pearls:
22:23 God will admit those who believe and work righteous deeds, to Gardens beneath which rivers flow: they shall be adorned therein with bracelets of gold and pearls; and their garments there will be of silk.
35:33 Gardens of Eternity will they enter: therein will they be adorned with bracelets of gold and pearls; and their garments there will be of silk.
52:24 Round about them will serve, [devoted] to them, youths [handsome] as pearls well-guarded.
Quotes on Pearls
“I had just received La Peregrina from New York on a delicate little chain and I was touching it like a talisman.” Elizabeth Taylor
“I favor pearls on screen and in my private life.” Grace Kelly
“Pearls lie not on the seashore. If you desires one you must dive for it.” Chinese Proverb
“Pearls are always appropriate.” Jackie Kennedy
“A woman needs ropes and ropes of pearls.” Coco Chanel
“All art is autobiographical; the pearl is the oyster’s autobiography” Federico Fellini