10 Pearl Fun Facts

 
pearl3.jpg
 

Pearls are extra fascinating in terms of being a gemstone because they're "organic gems"...

1. Pearls are formed inside the shells of mollusks such as oysters and mussels.

2. Pearls are the only gemstones in the world to have been extracted from living animals.

3. They are formed when an irritant such as a tiny stone or bit of sand gets inside the mollusk's shell. A lustrous substance, called nacre, is secreted around the object to protect the soft internal surface of the mollusk. As layer upon layer of nacre coats the irritant, a pearl is formed.

4. Pearls can take anywhere from a few months to a few years to develop depending on the water conditions and the size and type of mollusk.

5. Pearls are quite "soft" and range between 2.5 and 4.5 on the Mohs scale of hardness. They should be protected from extreme wear.

6. Natural pearls have been harvested from the Indian Ocean, the Persian Gulf, and the Red Sea for thousands of years.

 
When we think of pearls, we think of Audrey Hepburn.

When we think of pearls, we think of Audrey Hepburn.

 

7. Virtually all pearls (about 95%) harvested today are cultured or cultivated pearls, meaning mollusks are artificially implanted with small seeds and tended to on a farm.  It is very rare to find a pearl of a large size nowadays that forms naturally.

8. The oldest pearl jewelry ever discovered was found in the sarcophagus of a Persian Princess who died in 520 BC.

9. Pearls have been known to symbolize fertility, loyalty, and friendship.

10. Fresh water pearls are given on the 1st wedding anniversary. Pearls are also given on the 3rd, 12th and 30th anniversaries.

So those were the top 10 interesting facts about pearls you didn’t know existed. Hope you enjoyed!