Introduction to Aquamarine: Allure Across the Ages

In the realm of gemstones, few possess the captivating allure and timeless charm of aquamarine. Its very name, derived from the Latin words “aqua” (water) and “mare” (sea), evokes visions of serene ocean depths and the calming embrace of waves. From ancient civilizations to modern-day enthusiasts, the journey of aquamarine through history is as rich and vibrant as its hues.

Echoes of aquamarine’s significance resonate through the annals of time. From the Egyptians, who revered it as a symbol of protection under the watchful eye of Horus, to the Romans, who cherished its purported ability to safeguard sailors on perilous voyages, its presence has been felt across cultures and epochs. Today, its enduring popularity persists, cherished by jewelry aficionados and collectors alike for its delicate beauty and endless possibilities in design.

Embark with us on a journey through the ages, as we unravel the mystique of aquamarine. Explore its storied past, from the corridors of ancient civilizations to the workshops of contemporary artisans. Delve into the depths of its mesmerizing hues, ranging from the serene blues of tranquil waters to the verdant greens of hidden coves. Join us as we celebrate the enduring legacy of aquamarine, a gemstone that continues to enchant and inspire across generations.

A Journey Through Time: The History of Aquamarine

The allure of aquamarine stretches back millennia, captivating civilizations with its calming beauty and symbolic significance. Here’s a glimpse into the gemstone’s fascinating historical journey:

  • Ancient Civilizations: Evidence suggests aquamarine was admired as early as ancient Egypt. Beads fashioned from the gemstone have been discovered in Egyptian tombs, suggesting it may have been associated with deities or used for decorative purposes. The Greeks and Romans also held aquamarine in high regard. Greeks linked it to Poseidon, the god of the sea, and believed it protected sailors on their voyages. Romans, on the other hand, associated aquamarine with Venus, the goddess of love and beauty, and used it to promote peace and harmony.
  • Medieval Europe: During the Middle Ages, aquamarine’s popularity continued to flourish. The gemstone was often incorporated into religious artifacts and believed to possess healing properties. Some believed it could soothe stomach ailments and improve eyesight. Additionally, its association with clear communication made it a prized possession among scholars and diplomats.
  • The Renaissance and Beyond: The Renaissance period witnessed a renewed appreciation for aquamarine’s beauty. Skilled artisans crafted the gemstone into intricate jewelry designs, adorning royalty and nobility. Queen Elizabeth I of England was known for her fondness for aquamarine, and the gemstone continued to be a popular choice for centuries to come.
  • The 19th and 20th Centuries: The discovery of significant aquamarine deposits in Brazil during the 19th century increased the gemstone’s availability and solidified its place in the world of fine jewelry. Art Deco design movements of the 20th century embraced aquamarine’s cool tones and geometric shapes, leading to a surge in its popularity. Today, aquamarine remains a versatile and beloved gemstone, cherished for its timeless elegance and symbolic association with tranquility and emotional well-being.

The history of aquamarine reflects its enduring appeal across cultures and eras. From ancient reverence to modern design trends, this captivating gemstone continues to inspire and delight.

A Natural Slightly Greenish Blue Aquamarine Gemstone

Unveiling the Secrets: Aquamarines’ Geological Formation

Aquamarine belongs to the beryl mineral family, sharing a close kinship with the more famous emerald. These gemstones form within pegmatite rocks, igneous rock formations that cool slowly, allowing crystals to grow large and well-defined. The presence of iron within the crystal structure is what gives aquamarine its characteristic blue and green hues. The amount and distribution of iron determine the color intensity, with trace amounts resulting in pale seafoam green and higher concentrations leading to deeper, more vibrant blues. Aquamarine deposits can be found in various locations worldwide, with Brazil, Madagascar, Nigeria, and Pakistan being some of the most prominent sources.

A Spectrum of Tranquility: The Color Palette of Aquamarine

One of the most captivating aspects of aquamarine is its diverse color spectrum. The gemstone ranges from the subtlest hints of seafoam green to deep, captivating blues. The most prized aquamarine hues are known as “Santa Maria” after a famous Brazilian mine, boasting a vibrant, slightly greenish blue that resembles pristine ocean waters. However, other shades like pale blue and even hints of yellow can also be captivating, especially when paired with skilled cutting and design. Factors like the amount of iron present, the presence of other trace elements, and the cutting style all influence the final color expression of each unique aquamarine gem.

Aquamarine: A Gemstone for Every Design Vision

Aquamarine’s beauty translates beautifully into a variety of jewelry designs. Popular cuts include the classic round brilliant, which maximizes sparkle and fire, and the emerald cut, which emphasizes the gemstone’s clarity and depth of color. Oval and cushion cuts are also well-suited for aquamarine, offering a balance between brilliance and elegance. When setting aquamarine, jewelers often use white metals like platinum or white gold to enhance the gem’s cool tones. Yellow gold can also be a stunning choice, creating a warm contrast with the blue or green hues. For everyday wear, consider bezel settings that offer added protection to this moderately hard (7.5 to 8 on the Mohs scale) gemstone. Proper care, including cleaning with mild soap and lukewarm water, will ensure your aquamarine jewelry retains its brilliance for generations to come.

Unveiling the Mystical Side: Aquamarine’s Healing Properties

Beyond its undeniable physical beauty, aquamarine has long been associated with a range of metaphysical properties. In crystal therapy, it is believed to promote peace, tranquility, and emotional clarity. Some wear aquamarine to soothe anxiety, encourage clear communication, and enhance creativity. Legends also associate aquamarine with marital happiness and safe travel, making it a thoughtful gift for weddings or journeys. Whether you believe in its mystical properties or not, there’s no denying the sense of calm and serenity that this gemstone evokes.

Ethical Sourcing: Mining Aquamarine with Responsibility

As with any gemstone, the ethical sourcing of aquamarine is a growing concern. Look for retailers who prioritize responsible mining practices that minimize environmental impact and ensure fair working conditions. Several organizations offer certifications, such as the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) or the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC), which can help you identify ethically sourced gemstones. By making informed choices, you can support sustainable practices and ensure your aquamarine purchase reflects a commitment to social responsibility.

Understanding Value: Grading Aquamarine for Quality

The value of aquamarine is determined by several factors, including carat weight, color, clarity, and cut. Larger, more vibrant-colored stones with exceptional clarity will naturally command higher prices. However, cut also plays a significant role. A well-cut aquamarine will maximize its brilliance and fire, enhancing its overall beauty and value.

It’s important to consult with a reputable jeweler or gemologist who can assess the quality of an aquamarine and provide an accurate valuation. Grading reports from recognized institutions like the GIA can offer valuable insight into the stone’s characteristics and contribute to its overall worth. Remember, the most valuable aspect of any gemstone is its ability to capture your heart. Don’t hesitate to prioritize the beauty and emotional connection you feel with an aquamarine over solely focusing on price.

A Legacy in Stone: Famous Aquamarine Pieces

Throughout history, aquamarine has graced some of the most iconic jewelry pieces. Here are a few captivating examples:

  • The Brazilian Crown Jewels: This magnificent collection features a breathtaking aquamarine and diamond parure. The aquamarine centerpiece, a flawless gem of exceptional size and clarity, is surrounded by sparkling diamonds, creating a display of regal elegance.
  • The Dom Pedro Aquamarine: This legendary stone, weighing an astounding 10,363 carats, holds a place of honor at the Smithsonian Institution. Mined in Brazil in the 19th century, the Dom Pedro Aquamarine is one of the largest faceted aquamarines ever discovered. Its captivating presence continues to enthrall visitors from around the world.
  • Queen Elizabeth II’s Aquamarine Tiara: This exquisite tiara, crafted in the early 20th century, features graduated aquamarine stones surrounded by diamonds. The tiara has become a signature piece for the Queen, often worn for state occasions and adding a touch of regal grandeur to her ensembles.
  • Princess Diana’s Aquamarine Ring: Following her separation from Prince Charles, Princess Diana famously received an aquamarine ring. This stunning piece featured a 13-carat emerald-cut aquamarine flanked by diamonds, symbolizing a new chapter in her life. The ring was later loaned to Meghan Markle for their engagement photo shoot. Its current whereabouts are not officially confirmed, but it is believed to be either part of Prince William’s collection or returned to him after the engagement
  • Schlumberger Bow Brooch: This masterpiece by the renowned jewelry house of Schlumberger features a mesmerizing 148.5-carat aquamarine as its centerpiece. The gem is expertly cut in a unique bow shape and surrounded by sparkling diamonds, creating a piece of breathtaking elegance and artistry. The Schlumberger Bow Brooch is currently on display at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago.

These are just a few examples of the many captivating aquamarine pieces that have captured the imagination and garnered historical significance. From the grandeur of royal collections to the symbolic power of personal pieces, aquamarine continues to inspire awe and appreciation for its beauty and enduring legacy.

The Enduring Legacy of Aquamarine: A Look Towards the Future

Aquamarine’s timeless appeal ensures its continued presence in the world of gems and jewelry. As environmental and social consciousness grows, ethically sourced aquamarine will likely become even more sought-after. Designers will undoubtedly continue to push the boundaries, creating innovative settings and incorporating aquamarine into contemporary jewelry trends. Whether adorning a historic crown or a modern necklace, aquamarine’s legacy as a symbol of tranquility and beauty is certain to endure for generations to come.


The captivating allure of aquamarine transcends fleeting trends. This gemstone embodies the serenity of the sea, offering a sense of calm and emotional balance. From its fascinating geological origins to its diverse color spectrum and rich history, aquamarine beckons to be explored and admired. So, next time you seek a piece of jewelry that reflects both timeless elegance and a connection to nature, consider the tranquil beauty of the aquamarine, the gem that captures the essence of the sea. To bring this beauty to life, Zadran Gems, a leading seller of ethically sourced natural aquamarines, offers a stunning selection at some of the most affordable prices. Discover the perfect aquamarine to grace your collection and embrace the calming energy of the sea.