About pearls , their properties and their importance for contemporary jewelry design, we have spoken on several occasions, as it is a gem that JSecrets Design evaluates as elegant and feminine, and plays a leading role in designer rings . How are a natural pearl and a cultured pearl born? What are the differences between these categories of pearls ? You will find an answer in this article in addition to knowing interesting stories and meanings that this gem had for civilizations and characters in history .
How are a natural pearl and a cultured pearl born?
In its formation process, natural pearl is constituted when an irritant agent makes its way into certain species of Bivalves. As a defense mechanism, the mollusk secretes a fluid to cover the irritation. Layer after layer of this coating (known as mother of pearl ) is deposited neutralizing the irritating agent and little by little a shiny pearl is formed.
Until the beginning of the 20th century, natural pearls were an exclusive luxury for the wealthiest class. In 1916, the well-known Danish jeweler, Jacques Cartier bought his famous store on New York’s Fifth Avenue, trading two pearl necklaces for the valuable property. Three years later, the son of a Japanese pasta maker, perfected and patented a method to grow pearls and thus, the production of marine gems to be a treasure hunt became an industry.
The birth process of a cultured pearl is the same as that of a natural pearl, it only presents one difference: the irritating agent is surgically implanted, by the action of the man.
Pearls according to civilizations and famous people
The Romans had a special predilection for pearls, but in the 1st century BC it was its highest expression, since the women of the upper class of Rome wore even in bed. They also used them to upholster the couches.
Pearls have accompanied various characters in history, being, according to mythology, Aphrodite ‘s tears of joy, Cleopatra’s love potion and Krishna’s wedding gift to his daughter. The emperor Caligula , after having appointed his horse consul, decorated it with a pearl necklace ; and the Roman general Vitellius financed an entire military campaign with one of his mother’s pearl earrings.
In the Koran it can be read: when a good Muslim enters the kingdom of heaven, he is crowned with pearls of incomparable brilliance, and beautiful maidens who look like hidden pearls await him
The inhabitants of the Persian Gulf believed that these sea stones were a symbol of the moon and possessed divine powers. The oldest known pearl jewel was found in the sarcophagus of a Persian princess who died in 520 BC.
During the early Middle Ages, knights used to wear pearls on the battlefield, believing that they were magical and capable of protecting them from danger.
Native Americans have made use of these special gems. The Incas and Aztecs believed that pearls had been imbued with mystical properties of health, wisdom, and prophecy. The Indians of North America used freshwater pearls from the Mississippi River to make necklaces and put them in copper ornaments.
I hope this article full of curiosities and historical data has been able to awaken in you a passion for pearls , those wonderful gems from the sea. Socialize your comments and opinions about what you read here on social networks. Greetings and see you soon.