On of the rarest gemstones in the world, the rich blue tanzanite can only be found in Tanzania and comes with humble origins. Maasai herders had simply discovered a blue stone in the Merelani Hills in 1967, and was first called the blue zoisite. Its name was changed by Tiffany and Co. to give credit where the gem was discovered.
Zircon, on the other hand, is one of the oldest minerals on earth. The stone came in various colors, thus having multiple possible sources of its etymology--the Persian word “zargun” meaning “gold hued”, or the Arabic word “zarkun” meaning “vermillion”. It was believed to induce sound sleep and protect its wearers from evil. It is found in Australia, India, and Brazil.
A highly coveted jewel, the light blue turquoise was used as an adornment to Ancient Egyptian tombs, Ancient Persian Palaces, and even engraved in Arabic scripts. Pre-Columbian Native Americans used the turquoise to commune with the spirits of the sky, and Ancient Persians had the gem on their turbans to ward off evil. Its name is thought to have come from being first transported to the west through Turkey, and is mined in Persia, China, Egypt, and Mexico. Read more about our December Birthstone Rings.