The pale blue green hues of the aquamarine are reminiscent of the cool blue colors of the ocean. In fact, it gets its name from the Latin word aquamarina which means ‘seawater’. The colors of the aquamarine can range from a deep teal to a pale, crystal clear blue. The blue shades, that vary from stone to stone, are determined by the amount of iron present in the structure of the gemstone. Aquamarines reside in the Beryl family, along with emeralds, morganites, and many other colorful stones. The aquamarine can also be treated with heat to permanently alter its color to a darker, more desirable shade, but the value of the stone would be less than a naturally occurring stone of the same hue. Heat treated stones should always be marked as such.
The aquamarine is the designated birthstone for the month of March, and it is the traditional gift for a 19th wedding anniversary. Much of the folklore surrounding this gemstone is related to the ocean. Sailors once thought it had protective powers to return them safely home after an ocean voyage. Ancient Romans believed that this stone had close connections to Neptune, God of the Sea. In Christianity, the stone is linked to St. Thomas, who frequently traveled by boat.
Whether you enjoy the aquamarine for its supposed ability to provide its wearer with tranquility, serenity, clarity, and harmony, or you are drawn to the beauty of the sea which is reflected in this stone's visage, the aquamarine is a very affordable and durable gemstone.