Known as the ‘Queen of Gems’ Pearls are the only gemstone created by a living animal. The colour & shape of Pearls can vary greatly, it is dependant on the species of mollusc, environment it grows in & the location of the Pearl within the mollusc’s shell. Naturally created Pearls can form in two ways, either by the intrusion of a piece of organic matter such as a parasite entering the Oyster’s mantle or when the Oysters flesh is damaged whether by predator or other means. On both occasions the Oyster will start to protect itself by growing a pearl around the affected area. This starts by secreting calcium carbonate in the form of aragonite with a horn like compound called conchiolin. When aragonite & conchiolin form together they are called nacre also known as Mother of Pearl. Microscopic concentric layers are slowly deposited over many months &or years to form an iridescent nacreous Pearl.
The most sought-after Pearls are grown by several species of the Oyster genus Pinctada, they are found in saltwater bodies’ world wide. Although Oysters are the only mollusc that will grow an iridescent Pearl they are not the only species of shell fish that can create Pearls, other molluscs such as fresh water mussels or clams also produce Pearls. Naturally formed saltwater Pearls are the highest priced due to their rarity & form. Freshwater Pearls are more common, easier to harvest & therefore yield a lower price. The cultivation or farming of Pearls is a lengthy process which has been practiced by China for at least 1000 years. Pearls can be artificially seeded by various means & result in what is called a cultured Pearl. A cultured Pearl is an industry recognised term that refers to a Pearl which has been grown in a Pearl farm with human assistance, either by inserting a tissue graft of another mollusc or by inserting a bead (often of Mother of Pearl), the later results in a perfectly round outer shell of Pearl. Once the mollusc has been implanted it is returned to water for many months before harvesting, in some cases up to 2 years. Cultured Pearls are the most affordable Pearls available on the market.
Steeped in human history Pearls are the oldest known gemstone. The oldest recovered artifacts of pearl were discovered in Iraq within the tombs of an ancient Mesopotamian civilization known as the kingdom of Ur & dated to over 2500 BC. They used Pearl & other precious materials to adorn wooden stringed instruments, ornaments, head dresses, hair pins & various types of jewellery. The Mesopotamian people most likely harvested their Pearls from the Persian Gulf, the birth place of the Pearl trade & an area known to yield the finest quality of Pearl. In China Pearls were gifted to royalty as early as 2300 BC & said to symbolise the purity of the wearer. Ancient Romans considered Pearl jewellery to be the ultimate status symbol. In the 1st century BC, Julius Caesar passed a law restricting the wearing of Pearls, permitting only the Roman ruling classes to wear the precious gem. Many cultures across the world have collected & revered the beauty of Pearls for thousands of years, they have played an important role in trade relationships, civil developments & cultural advancements. The word Pearl is thought to have derived from the mid 13th century Latin term ‘perla’ or ‘pernula’ which meant ‘leg’ a reference to the shape of the mollusc shells. However the usual Latin word for Pearl was ‘margarita’ meaning “that which is precious or excellent.”
Queen of Gems, Pearls embody pure white light & divine energy, they help one to ignite the inner fire, radiate light & be filled with love. Their energy is a powerful heart energy that instills an endless vibration of pure love, it resonates with all chakras cleansing & aligning the entire auric field. Pearls turn negative’s into positive’s gifting resilience & great strength through inner power. They teach the ability to conquer inner demons & overcome any obstacle whether internal or external. They show how to gracefully embrace change & still manifest the soul’s desires. Pearls positive energy brings joy & happiness, Pearls everyday keeps gloomy clouds away. Pearls are always shining a joyous vibration & are excellent at keeping ones spirits high.
Pearls hold the wisdom of beauty within, showing the perfection in life & all living beings. They bring self confidence, self love & help one cultivate inner beauty. Pearls show one how to fully embrace & love thy self, they help to cast of the illusions of societal expectations while whispering “you are perfect & beautiful just the way you are, you are so much more wonderful than what you see.” They help us step into the light of self recognition, embracing the wonder & freedom that comes with loving thy self. Love is the key. With the gift of grace & ease Pearls help one navigate the waters of intense emotions. They bring a balanced calm mind centering the body’s energy & releasing tension as well as feeling of uneasiness or worry. They are particularly helpful at teaching one to master their anger, how to harness it then focus it into productive activities. Pearl guides us to achieve a positive outcome & avoid self harm or destruction.
Deeply connected to all earthly & celestial energies Pearls hold great wisdom with powerful transformative magic. They can be used to harness Moon energy & regenerate life or generate new life. There are no boundaries to what can be achieved with Pearl as a magical ally.
Aids bones & teeth integrity. Good for menstrual issues such as hormonal fluctuations, pain & cramping. Assists reproductive organs, fertility, chronic illness, stress & lethargy, skin & premature ageing.
Group: Organics- Carbonate mineral - protein
Crystal System: Orthorhombic
Specific Gravity: 2.60-2.85
R.I: 1.52-1.66 (black pearl 1.53-1.69)
Colour: White, pink, silver, cream, brown, green, blue, yellow, orange, black, gold, purple
Fluorescence: Saltwater Pearls exhibit higher fluorescence that Freshwater due to the lack of manganese. White Pearl: light blue – light yellow, Yellow/Gold Pearl: yellow-green, green/brown – dark brown Black Pearl: pink-orange/red.
Strunz Classification: 05.AB