Turquoise Stone

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Turquoise Stone – Meaning and Symbolism

Turquoise stone meaningThe semiprecious turquoise stone is the birthstone of December.  Its color ranges from green-blue to sky-blue. It is found worldwide. 

The name simply means “Turkish stone”. In Turkey the name for turquoise is «fayruz».

Fayruz means the lucky stone and stone of happiness.  It is considered very auspicious.

This gemstone is believed to clear the mind and bring joy. It is a popular stone to give to dear friends.

It is also associated with courage and success.

Turquoise Stone for Aviators

Turquoise is recognized as an auspicious gemstone for all aviators. It is said to bring good luck to all who wear it on a flight. Passengers, cabin crew and pilots remember to bring your turquoise stone or jewelry.

The turquoise stone has been used as a talisman to protect travelers since the Middle Ages. In our modern world it has gained the reputation of being a protective stone for traveling by air.

The Turquoise Stone as a Lucky Horse Amulet

Turquoise has a long history in Europe as a good luck amulet for horses and horseback riders.

This amulet would protect both the horse and the rider and lessen the chances of falling. The gemstone would be placed on the horse’s bridle to prevent serious accidents.

Still today many fasten turquoise stone beads on the horse for protection, especially in Turkey and Iran.

If the accident does happen and the horse or rider falls the turquoise amulet would keep them safe from injury. It was widely believed that “Whoever owns a true turquoise set in gold will not injure any of his limbs when he falls, as long as he has the stone with him”.

Turquoise Stone Ring as a Symbol of Love

Turquoise ring symbolismIn England this stone was connected to lasting love. It was not uncommon for a young woman to give a turquoise stone ring to her boyfriend before he embarked on a journey.  This was to ensure he would not forget her.

Shakespeare refers to this tradition in his play “The Merchant of Venice”. Shylock received such a turquoise ring from Leah, his late wife. Shylock treasures the ring immensely.  He is absolutely devastated when his daughter stole the ring from him.

“Out upon her! Thou torturest me, Tubal: it was my turquoise; I had it of Leah when I was a bachelor: I would not have given it for a wilderness of monkeys.”

Russia has a long tradition of using turquoise in the wedding ring as a symbol of love.




The Apache Tradition of North America

In his book “Apache Medicine-Men” John Bourke claims the Apache medicine men used to wear turquoise beads. They believed these beads gave them the power they needed to heal the sick.

The Apache were also known to fasten small beads of this stone to their bows convinced the beads would empower them to hit their target.

According to Apache folklore turquoise stones could be found by finding the end of the rainbow. That was a sure place to dig around in the wet ground to find this useful stone.

Xiuhtecuhtli in Aztec Mythology

Xiuhtecuhtli mask
Xiuhtecuhtli mask, British Museum, London

In Aztec mythology Xiuhtecuhtli was called “The Lord of Turquoise”. He was the god of fire and of the year. He resided in the center of the earth which was believed to be enclosed with turquoise stones.

His name had three different meanings: year, fire and turquoise. There was always a sacred fire burning at his temples.

In some myths his wife was Chalchiuhtlicue, goddess of the water. Her name means “She of the jade skirt”.

Xiuhtecuhtli was an important god. Festivals were held in his honor yearly. Every fourth year a major festival was held in his honor. They considered it vital to be on good terms with Xiuhtecuhtli and sacrificed humans by burning them after cutting out their heart.