Not happy with your birthstone? Explore these alternative birthstones associated with astrological signs, angels, the hour or day of your birth, and more.
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Choose stones associated with zodiacal signs or months symbolic of angels. You can even forgo your birth month and pick a gem associated with the day of the week or hour of your birth.
Alternative Birthstones Based on the Signs of the Zodiac
|Aquarius (January 21 - February 18)||Garnet|
|Pisces (February 19 - March 20)||Amethyst|
|Aries (March 21 - April 20)||Bloodstone|
|Taurus (April 21 - May 20)||Sapphire|
|Gemini (May 21 - June 21)||Agate|
|Cancer (June 22 - July 22)||Emerald|
|Leo (July 23 - August 23)||Onyx|
|Virgo (August 24 - September 22)||Carnelian|
|Libra (September 23 - October 23)||Chrysolite|
|Scorpio (October 24 - November 22)||Beryl|
|Sagittarius (November 23 - December 22)||Topaz|
|Capricorn (December 23 - January 20)||Ruby|
Note: the dates for the zodiac signs are tropical dates.
In the 19th century, the term chrysolite referred to yellow-green chrysoberyl as well as peridot and prehnite gems. However, that name is no longer used. (Chrysoberyl, peridot, and prehnite are all distinct gem species).
Alternative Birthstones Associated with Guardian Angels
The ancient term carbuncle refers to any red gem. Historically, stones referred to as carbuncles were likely red garnets. Jacinth was likely either a transparent, reddish brown zircon or hessonite garnet, although the term sometimes referred to blue stones, too.
Alternative Birthstones Based on the Names of the Apostles
If you share a name with one of the twelve apostles, this list may interest you. During the Middle Ages, many scholars associated each apostle with a gemstone. (Judas was replaced by Paul, who wasn't one of the original twelve). Not surprisingly, different writers made different connections. Below, you'll find one such list. Note, these choices have no connection to date or time of birth.
|James (the Younger)||Amethyst|
Sardonyx is a variety of chalcedony with red and white layers.
Alternative Birthstones Based on Birth Hour
|1 AM||Smoky Quartz||1 PM||Zircon|
Alternative Birthstones Based on the Day of the Week of Birth
In this system, each day of the week offers at least two choices.
|Birthstone||Day of the Week||Phenomenal Birthstone|
|Pearl, Rock Crystal||Monday||Moonstone|
|Ruby, Emerald||Tuesday||Star Sapphire|
|Amethyst, Lodestone||Wednesday||Star Ruby|
|Sapphire, Carnelian||Thursday||Cat's eye|
|Emerald, Cat's eye||Friday||Alexandrite|
Rock crystal is colorless quartz.
Birthstones Based on Seasons
Perfect for those who really want to pick from the "Big Four" gemstones.
Feeling overwhelmed by the options? Maybe this makes it easier to understand why superstitious attachments to gems gave way to a more scientific approach. You could just appreciate gemstones for their physical and optical properties or simply their beauty. Try this birthstone gemology quiz.
However, many people still feel a strong mystical connection to gems. If you do, surely in the lists above you can find a birthstone that corresponds to you and feels right. You and your choice will likely withstand this happy little arena of birthstone madness.
Dr. Gerald Wykoff GG CSM
Dr. Gerald Wykoff is GG (Graduate Gemologist), a CSM (Certified Supreme Master gemcutter), educator, and author of several gemology books. He founded the American Society of Gemcutters in the 1980s and served for more than 10 years as the editor of its monthly magazine, American Gemcutter.
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