(Last Updated on : 27/12/2012)
Pearl is the oldest known gem, and for many centuries, it was considered the most valuable. Unlike all gems, the pearl is organic matter derived from a living creature namely oysters and mollusks. There is much folklore and tradition about the pearl. In fact so much history accompanies this stone that five months claim it as a birthstone such as February, April, June, July and November. The pearl is often called as 'queen of sea'.
The production of cultured pearls was perfected by the Japanese people. The research that led to the establishment of the industry was started in the 1890s by Mikimoto Kokichi, who, after long experimentation, concluded that a very small mother-of-pearl bead introduced into the mollusk's tissue was the most successful stimulant to pearl production. Cultured pearls closely approximate natural pearls.
Pearls are characterized by their translucence and lustre and by a delicate play of surface color called orient. The more perfect its shape i.e. spherical or drop like and the deeper its lustre, the greater is the pearl's value. Only those pearls produced by mollusks whose shells are lined with mother-of-pearl e.g., certain species of both saltwater oysters and freshwater clams are fine pearls. Pearls from other mollusks are reddish or whitish, porcellaneous, or lacking in pearly lustre. The surface of a pearl is rough to the touch. Pearls come in a wide range of sizes. Those weighing less than 1/4 grain are called seed pearls. The largest naturally occurring pearls are the baroque pearls; one such pearl is known to have weighed 1,860 grains. Cultured pearl is natural but cultivated pearl produced by a mollusk after the intentional introduction of a foreign object inside the creature's shell.
Moon is the commanding deity of the element water, and rules over sea tides. The sphere of Moon is the reservoir of rainwater and thus Moon is the ruler of plants and the vegetable kingdom. Moon symbolizes the mother or female principle i.e. the energy that creates and preserves. The moon is one of the main sub-planets, getting light from the sun, it revolves round the earth, dispersing its shining light. It also revolves around the sun. The full moon i.e. Purnima
and the dark fortnight i.e. Amavasya
occurs when there is a difference of six Rashis between the sun and moon.
The colour of Moon is white. Its disposition is mucus-dominated, compassionate, astute and scholarly. It rules the peace of mind, comfort, all-purpose well-being and also the destiny of a person. The gemstone related to moon is Pearl. Pearl is a kind of stone. It is a combine of calcium and oxygen. It is considered a kind of calcium carbonate based on chemical combination. The color of pearls varies with the mollusk and its environment. It ranges from black to white, with the rose of Indian pearls esteemed most. Other colors are cream, gray, blue, yellow, lavender, green, and mauve. All occur in delicate shades. Cultured pearls are being produced in virtually every color of the rainbow as well.
Pearl belongs to the 'Moon' and zodiac sign 'cancer'. It is available in several colours. Rain drops, falling inside the mouth of pearl oysters during the 'Swati Nakshatra' solidifies them into pearls. However, the rising demand and attraction towards pearls have motivated scientists to provide humans with a vast number of cultivated pearls. These days with modern technology, substances equivalent to rain drops during the 'Swati Nakashtra' are instilled into the sea shells which in layer after layer of nacre, cover them with coral substances. These are called cultivated pearls. The same shell prepares both real and cultivated pearls. Therefore, there is no distinction between their grandness. Its availability in a huge number has lowered its cost in the market. Thus, it has gained attractiveness in society. According to astrology, the moon influences the human mind immensely. Pearl should be worn by those people who always hits upon setbacks.
The varieties of pearl can be discussed as jewelers commonly refer to saltwater pearls as Oriental pearls and to those produced by freshwater mollusks as freshwater pearls. Pearl and cultured pearl along with alexandrite and moonstone are birthstones of Gemini i.e. Twins. The timeframe starts from May 21 to June 21. Freshwater Pearl is the anniversary gemstone for the 1st year of marriage whereas Pearl is the anniversary gemstone for the 12th and 30th year of marriage.
The moon occupies a central role in the solar system as well as our physiology. This influence is represented by the hypothalamus in our physiology, which controls our behavior, our emotions, our hormonal and reproductive cycles and our body temperature. It nourishes the physiology like a mother or queen and occupies a central place in the centre of the brain with the thalamus. When the planet moon is malefic, a person can suffer from loss of semen through urine, rheumatic and mental diseases. Due to malefic moon, who suffer from instability, life becomes full of struggles and circumstances are unfavorable, person should wear pearl.
Pearl mollifies obsession and mental discrepancy and reinforces the heart. It provides majestic benevolence, blessings from parents, family delight and affluence and enhances administrative qualities and visionary power. It eradicates abdominal ailments, enhances intelligence and learning capability. Its several uses are listed in medical science. It helps those who suffer from diseases related to eyes, throat, heart, urine, hydrosol, cough, and deficiency of calcium, disease related to gynaecology, indigestion
, fatigue, normal disease and physical failing. By curing a person, it brings back the vibrancy on the human face. If a mother buys a pearl for her child, it is much better for the child. Pearls eliminate emotional imbalances. They help one master the heart chakra, aid stomach, spleen, intestinal tract & ulcer problems. Pearl is said to help one see them and help improve self-worth. As an emblem of modesty, chastity and purity, the pearl symbolizes love, success, and happiness as well.
How to wear Pearl
It's weight should be at least 2 Rattis (240 mg). The pearl's worth increases with the increase in weight. Pearl should be studded in a silver ring or pendant. It should be worn ceremoniously on a Monday evening, when the moon is rising, after washing with water and unboiled milk and chanting 'Om Som Somaye Namah Om' or 'Om Chandraya Namah' in a Lord Shiva
temple. It should be worn on the smallest finger of the right hand. After finishing, rice, sugar, wheat, cloth and money should be donated to a Brahmin.
Pearl influences for 2 years 1 month and 27 days, from the very date when it is worn. An individual whose name starts with he, hu, hay, ho, da, dee, du, day, do should regard their sign of zodiac as Cancer and they should wear pearl. A man, whose date of birth falls on 2, 11, 20, and 29 of every month, should wear pearl. Again it can be mentioned that a person, whose lucky numbers are 2 and 7, can also wear pearl. However, it is very important to note that a person wearing pearl should not wear blue sapphire, diamond, and gomedh along with it.
Identification of a Genuine Pearl
A good pearl should have the following qualities in it. It should be moonlike and be of shining white color. It should be perfectly round, globular shape and size. Compactness should be there, which gives it a high specific gravity. The pearl should be lustre, soft glamour, attractiveness, and brilliance of reflection should be the characteristics. Smoothness should be there which gives an agreeable sensation to the eyes. Spotlessness and freedom from blemishes i.e. dents, scratches, ridges and impurities should be the prime characteristics.
There are also some flaws present in the pearl that can be mentioned as cracks or ridges. Wearing of such a pearl is injurious to one's health. When the pearl is having wavy thin line on the surface, it brings misfortune. If those are having dents, they bring loss of wealth. If any pearl has a mole like formation on the surface layer then this kind of pearls bring sadness and disease.
Care and treatment of Pearl
Pearls are less durable than most gems. They are sensitive to acids, dryness, and also humidity. If anyone wears cosmetics, perfume or a hair spray, they must put on before wearing pearl jewelry. When taking off cleaning pearls, they should be wiped with a dry, lint-free cloth. If needed, the pearls should be cleaned with warm soapy water. But one should be very careful and not to get water into the drill hole as the pearl may discolor. Pearls should be dried flat on an absorbent soft and preferably lint-free towel.
Everyone seems to love the beauty of a strand of pearls. It is a classic piece of jewelry. Pearl often symbolizes a happy marriage and in many countries, pearl is used as a wedding gift. The price of pearls vary widely because of its luster, size, how they were grown, color and type. Natural pearls are the most expensive, followed by cultured pearls. Fresh water pearls tend to be relatively inexpensive. Fake pearls are usually either too heavy or too light.
The most reliable method of testing if a pearl is natural or cultured is a combination of the X-radiography and X-ray fluorescence testing procedures. That means that any common customer has no way to distinguish between two types of pearls.