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Semi-Precious Gemstone Crystals and their Meanings

Whether you are an avid collector or you are looking for gifts for a friend or loved one, gemstones and crystals are a wonderful idea!

Many people are familiar with the precious gemstones like pearls, rubies, and diamonds.  But did you know that there are also other equally beautiful semi-precious gems?  Among the semi-precious stones are:
  • alexandrite, 
  • amber, 
  • amethyst, 
  • beryl, 
  • garnet, 
  • jadeite, 
  • lapis lazuli, 
  • moonstone, 
  • opal, 
  • topaz,
  • and turquoise.

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If you want to purchase a transparent and fascinating gem, look to alexandrite.  It appears to change color!   In daylight, the stone appears bright green, but when you're indoors it is colored raspberry red.  It was only in 1831 when this stone was discovered in Russia.  The color-changing crystal is just as fascinating today as it was when first discovered.

Amber is not actually a gemstone, rather it is fossilized tree sap.  However, amber is a highly sought after gift, and it can be found mostly in the region of the Baltic.  Amber may or may not have inclusions of ancient insects. These critters forever immortalized in amber make for an interesting conversation piece.

If you want to achieve inner peace, try amethyst.  Amethyst is considered a stone of enlightenment.  It also has a history of being energetically supportive in overcoming addictions.  It is purple in color but it is also available in lighter lavender shades.  Deep, rich purple is the most desirable color among crystal collectors.

Warriors of long ago wore beryl to protect themselves.  This gemstone is available in different shades such as pink, yellow, golden, emerald, and aquamarine.  This is a durable stone and because of this characteristic, the stone is well known.

Historically, garnet was thought to stop blood diseases and hemorrhaging.  But because of its durability and brilliance, this red stone is a very precious gem.  Garnet is believed to energetically assist in emotional healing, grounding and improved self-worth.

Jadeite is a highly-revered stone of Chinese culture.  Centuries past, this culture looked to jadeite to strengthen the body in life, and protect the spirit after death.  This stone comes from Guatemala and Myanmar.  This gemstone is available in different colors like mottled green, whitish gray, white, pink, mauve, brown, orange, yellow, and lilac.

If you prefer intense brilliance and deep color, you may like lapis lazuli.  This stone is mined in Argentina, Afghanistan, Chile, Russia and Canada.  Lapiz lazuli is deep electric blue, and often contains inclusions of pyrite, giving it a golden shimmer.  Lapis lazuli symbolically represents inner vision.

Moonstone comes from the family of feldspar.  The blue moonstone varieties are far more valuable and desirable than the transparent and milky varieties.  Moonstone symbolically represents the feminine energy of the moon, and goddess energy.

If you love the colors of the rainbow, go for opal.  This stone can also be found in rare black and this is highly sought-after in the gemstone market.  Opal literally means, "precious stone".  Many varieties contain a flash of color reminiscent of fire.  Opal at one time was once believed to be "bad luck"in European culture, while the Romans believed it to bring prosperity and good luck.

Topaz is a gemstone that symbolizes affection and love.  This is a very rare stone.  It is a hard stone, making it durable for jewelry.  It is also brilliant and available in a variety of colors, making it highly desirable by gemologists.  Most people are unaware that this is a rare stone and often mistake the glass or quartz imitations as the true stones.  Topaz means "to seek", and is symbolic of spiritual clarity.

In Africa and Asia, turquoise is very precious.  It is also available in color varieties like greenish blue, light/dark blue, and the popular color we often refer to as "turquoise", or Robin's egg blue.  Metaphysically speaking, turquoise is associated with spiritual expansion and communication.  It is the most historically used gemstone of ancient days, including as Egyptians and present-day Native Americans.

There are many imitations of turquoise.  One such imitation is dyed howlite.  A true gemologist would not try to deceive someone with the imitation, rather would disclose the gem as howlite, which has metaphysical properties all its own.  Howlite is a calming stone.


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