Aquamarine’s name comes from the Latin for seawater, and ancient mariners claimed the gem would calm waves and keep sailors safe at sea. This March birthstone was also thought to bring happiness in marriage. It was also thought to make the wearer unconquerable and amiable, and to quicken the intellect.
The Brazilian state of Minas Geraishas been an important source of aquamarine for the past two centuries. Aquamarines are found in primary (hard rock) and secondary (weathered) pegmatite deposits in the eastern portion of the state, near the gem center of Teófilo Otoni.
Aquamarine is also found high in the Karakorum foothills of Pakistan. To reach the deposits, miners must climb steep paths to elevations of 9,800 to 13,000+ feet (3,000 to more than 4,000 meters) and work the sides of forbidding cliffs.
Aquamarine birthstones are also mined in Kenya, Madagascar, Nigeria, Zambia and Mozambique, as well as elsewhere in Africa. U.S. sources include the Mount Antero area of Colorado (it’s the state gem) and California’s Riverside and San Diego counties. In addition, aquamarine has been found in China, Myanmar, Russia and Ukraine, among other countries.
With a hardness of 7.5–8 on the Mohs Scale, this March birthstone is durable enough for everyday wear. Caring for the gem is easy. Use warm water, mild dish soap and a toothbrush to scrub behind the birthstone where dirt can collect.
Kitsinian Jewelers is located on McBean Pkwy in Valencia, California at the Promenade at Town Center in Santa Clarita.