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December's Birthstones: Turquoise, Tanzanite, and Zircon

December Birthstone - Turquoise, Tanzanite, Zircon Birthstone

December is the month of celebrations and festivities. As the last month of the year, it encompasses traditions and looking forward to new beginnings. With Christmas and New Year marked in red on calendars, December is filled with finding the perfect present for your friends and family. There are a thousand and one gift ideas, but nothing comes close to jewelry. Giving jewelry to your loved one, especially with a December birthstone, is a personal and thoughtful present. Diamondrensu offers you all three gorgeous December gemstones: turquoise, tanzanite, and zircon.

What makes birthstones unique is their ability to mold into the perfect customized presents. Earrings, rings, wedding bands, bracelets, necklaces, or loose stones—gemstones work like a charm everywhere. Even though the word 'birthstone' mentions 'birth,' they are not limited to only December babies. These stones make festivals even more special with their beauty, meaning, and history.

Tanzanite Gemstone Ring, 4.29 CT Natural Tanzanite Oval Shape Wedding Ring, Halo/Pave Round Moissanite

History and Symbolism of December’s Birthstones

December Birthstone: Turquoise

As the first December stone to be mined, turquoise is in a league of its own. Derived from the French phrase 'Pierre turquoise,' meaning Turkish stone, this gemstone traveled from Turkey to Europe. The history of the turquoise birthstone dates back to ancient Egypt, where Egyptian rules and courtiers wore turquoise jewelry. After their deaths, Egyptian royal families were buried with their turquoise gems, making them one of the oldest jewels. In another tale, Chinese painters used turquoise to decorate their art pieces.

Native Americans used the gemstone to perform rituals and ceremonies. They made masks, currencies, tools, and decorative items from the stone. For instance, Apache, a Native American tribe, wore turquoise to use their weapons properly and hit their target with precision. They also believed turquoise came from the sky due to its color. Like other birthstones that signify marital milestones, turquoise is a popular gift to celebrate eleven years of marriage.

Another characteristic that adds to its uniqueness is its name accurately matches its color. Turquoise is available in various colors, such as different shades of green, green yellow, and shades of blue. Green colored turquoise stones are opaque, with dark veiny designs engraved on them. Additionally, turquoise birthstones feel smooth when touched and can range from translucent to dim in appearance.

Folktales speak highly of turquoise. For instance, in ancient times, Hindus believed wearing turquoise jewelry would provide wealth and give them the moon's blessing. They also thought the stone would shower the wearer with health, good fortune, and wisdom. The December birthstone was also associated with joy, calmness, peace, positivity, and security.

In the 13th century BC, turquoise signified protection. Kings, guards, and horse riders carried the stone and attached it to their horses to protect them from falling or hurting. Others believed the stone sensed dangerous situations and shattered itself to notify the wearer of potential threats. Ancient Egyptians believed turquoise symbolized spiritual powers and represented happiness and contentment. In old Europe, soldiers' wives gifted them turquoise stones as a sign of remembrance and good health.

In addition to being a protection charm, some people considered the stone to spread love. Gifting or receiving the rock was a part of the courting process, notifying the recipient of the sender's romantic interest in them. Various authors, including Shakespeare, used it to write proposal scenes. In the 12th century, Arab poets claimed turquoise cleansed the air and predicted weather changes.

December Birthstone: Tanzanite

Turquoise was the first December stone to be mined, but tanzanite is the latest gemstone to join the month. The origin of tanzanite lies in its name; it was discovered on Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, East Africa. Tanzanite is one of a kind. Since it is the latest stone to claim its throne as one of December's birthstones, tanzanite is a rarity, making it even more special. Its forms under harsh and unpredictable conditions, which only occur on Mount Kilimanjaro.

This Dec birthstone unintentionally came into existence. Unlike other gemstones that were mined to be found, tanzanite was accidentally discovered in the late 1960s when someone from an ancient tribe noticed the gem sparkling in a garden. He then sold it to a rock collector, who consulted various jewelers to find its origin and name. After several testing and discussion rounds, they officially introduced tanzanite to the world as a rare and unique gemstone.

Tanzanite's popularity increased after its discovery, instantly increasing its demand and making it a consumer's favorite stone. Tanzanite's color played a significant role in boosting its popularity. Its color pattern ranges from light purple with blue shades to a dark velvet color with tinges of prominent purple shades. This Dec birthstone color makes it the ideal stone for jewelry designs, especially engagement rings and wedding bands.

According to tanzanite lore, during an eventful night, lightning struck Mount Kilimanjaro, setting it on fire. However, the magic comprised magical elements that turned plain crystals into purple blue rocks. Some people believed tanzanite's supernatural origin would grant them a long, safe, and fulfilling life. Centuries ago, tanzanite was associated with spirituality and mood swings. If those tales are to be believed, then wearing tanzanite at different angles would change the light's direction when contacting the rock. Each angle symbolized a different mood. For instance, red hues signified anger, whereas light lilac hues represented peace and calm.

Trillion Shape Natural Tanzanite Gemstone, 2.47 CT Trillion Cut December Gemstone for Custom Engagement Ring or Wedding Ring

December Birthstone: Zircon

Derived from the Arabic word 'zarquin,' meaning red, and the Persian word 'zargus,' meaning golden, the zircon birthstone is the oldest December gem. The zircon mineral comes from zirconium and silicon and consists of tiny crystals. A relatively strong rock, zircon can withstand extreme weather conditions.

Zircon's unique composition and color stand out from the other birthstones. This December birthstone color ranges from red and orange to yellow and brown. Since zircon consists of zirconium and silicon, its molecular composition is different and receptive to uranium radiations that change its internal texture. You can also find green zircon loose stones, even though they are the rarest of the bunch. Green zircon dates back to ancient Hindu customs, where it was associated with sacred trees used as offerings to deities. In the 1800s, Hindu writers claimed zircon was a glowing stone similar to diamonds.

Ancient Arabs were fond of red, brown, and orange zircon stones, believing they would bring them good luck, protection, and fortune. In the mid 14th century, people commonly used the stone as protection against widespread plagues targeting European countries. They thought the stone would eliminate the epidemic, help them sleep soundly, work as an anti poison medicine, and fix their stomach related conditions, such as acidity.

Where are Turquoise, Tanzanite, and Zircon Found?

If you are looking for the perfect stone for your loved one, you can find December birthstones all over the globe—and in Diamondrensu's curated selection.

December Birthstone: Turquoise

You can find turquoise in Iran, where blue turquoise was first discovered. In addition, Southwest America is one of the primary Turquoise manufacturers, with Arizona and Nevada taking the lead. You can also trace turquoise to Virginia, especially if you have set your sights on opaque turquoise rocks. Finally, China also prides itself on manufacturing and delivering high quality turquoise stones. If you visit China, Hubei will offer you some of the most stunning turquoise gemstones.

December Birthstone: Tanzanite

The tanzanite birthstone is a rare stone, and that is due to its location. Doing its name justice, you can only find tanzanite in the place of its discovery: Tanzania in East Africa. However, even though Mount Kilimanjaro is where the rock was found, nowadays, you can find it in the Merelani mines.

December Birthstone Ring, Rare 6.25 CT Emerald Cut Natural Tanzanite Engagement Ring

December Birthstone: Zircon

You can find this December birthstone in Sri Lanka. As one of the primary zircon manufacturers, Sri Lanka mines the stone in various colors and textures. You can also book a flight to Thailand in search of the jewel, as Thailand mines are famous for zircon acquisition. In Myanmar, you can find high quality zircon, especially green, one of the rarest zircon colors. If you live in Cambodia, you are lucky, as it produces blue or colorless zircon.

Turquoise, Tanzanite, and Zircon Birthstone Care and Cleaning

December Birthstone: Turquoise

Turquoise stands six on the Mohs Scale of Hardness, making it softer than other gemstones. Since it is a relatively delicate stone, it is crucial to store it carefully to maintain its structure and color. When taking care of your turquoise birthstone jewelry, consider the following factors:

  • Keep it in cool areas, as high temperatures can fade its color.
  • Ensure strong chemicals or moisture meet your jewelry to avoid wear and tear damage.
  • Wash your turquoise ring or necklace in warm soapy water, and clean it gently with soft bristles. After washing it, wipe it with a soft, lint-free cloth.
  • Store your turquoise stone separately to prevent other gemstones from scratching.

December Birthstone: Tanzanite

Like turquoise, tanzanite stands six to seven on the Mohs Hardness scale. It would be best to wear it inside jewelry pieces to protect it from damage instead of carrying loose tanzanite stones. When taking care of this Dec birthstone, keep it away from steamers. Wash it thoroughly and gently in warm water with a safe for jewels soap.

December Birthstone: Zircon

All December stones, including zircon, rank six to seven on the hardness scale. Therefore, when storing your zircon birthstone, remember the following factors:

  • Even though exposure to harsh chemicals does not change its structure, it would be best to keep it away from acids to maintain its color.
  • Store your zircon gem in a separate box, as touching other gemstones can cause friction, thus damaging it.
  • Clean your stone with mild soap, rub it gently with soft bristles, and wipe it with a soft cotton cloth.

Wrapping Up

Attend this year's Christmas or New Year parties with your best outfit and pair it with your favorite December birthstone. A sleek black dress would look gorgeous with a violet tanzanite stone. Alternatively, you can match your green bracelet with a green zircon necklace to enhance your beauty. This December, make your festivities memorable with Diamondrensu's exquisite birthstone collection!