Monday, 2 December 2013

Birthstone Unicorns - Tanzanite (December)

Happy December everyone and welcome to the countdown to the festivities!

As most of you probably know I have written a children’s series set around birthstones and their symbolism. Each month I like to tell you a bit about the particular birthstone I feature in my story and post a short extract. Eleven of the twelve stories feature the listed ‘traditional’ birthstone for that month but December is the month I veer off slightly! Well it is Christmas, I'm allowed to be a little different! For December I focus on the one of the ‘modern’ gems, the Tanzanite.

Why did I do this? Well a couple of reasons really. Firstly, I love, love, love the Tanzanite and its bluey/purpley colour. It is so pretty and so me! (Sadly it isn’t my birthstone). Secondly, I thought Tanzanite made an excellent name for a Birthstone Unicorn. In the story I sometimes shorten it to Tanzy and it fits the story perfectly. Check out the link at the top to meet her.

As its name might suggest, Tanzanite was first found in Tanzania in 1967. It is relatively new to the official birthstone list having only found its way on in 2002 where it joined the traditional gem Turquoise and other more modern additions, the Blue Zircon and Blue Topaz. But I personally feel it is a wonderful addition and its colour unique.

As Tanzanite is such a new addition there are few myths or legends surrounding it so I have used some of the associations with the traditional turquoise to weave into the story. However, legend says, that Masai cattle herders first found the stone. Following a lightening strike some herders noticed that brown crystals had turned deep blue/purple due to the heat from the fire. In Tanzania, women who have just given birth, wear blue beads and fabrics to bring health and good fortune to their babies.

As the Gregorian Birthstone Poem features the traditional gems this verse refers to the blue turquoise, enjoy!


'If cold December gave you birth
The month of snow and ice and mirth
Place on your hand a turquoise blue
Success will bless what e'er you do.'


25 comments:

  1. Humans might not have many stories about it, but I bet the rock has been around long enough to have some good ones.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good point Alex, if only they could speak!

      Delete
  2. It sounds pretty! And so does the turquoise, big fan of that color! I was born in June, so I think that makes my birthstone a...pearl? Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong! =)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are quite right Leandra, June's traditional birthstone is the pearl. Check the link if you want to find out more.
      http://suzannefurness.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/birthstone-unicorns-pearl.html

      Delete
  3. a lightning strike, Zeus is having some fun lol

    ReplyDelete
  4. Had to look this one up. You're right, it's really pretty. I still like opals best of all, I think - but this one swayed me. (Not that I ever have to make this sort of choice in real life *sigh*)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wouldn't they be nice choices to make Helen!

      Delete
  5. And I have to ask...
    Did you see the purple house that was doing the rounds of the internet recently?
    http://metro.co.uk/2013/11/16/garish-or-gorgeous-purple-lovers-dream-home-up-for-sale-in-middlesex-4189117/
    I'd love to know what you thought of it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh gosh yes my kids showed me this one! It went something like "hey Dad, found the perfect house for Mum!" Purple walls and carpets I could go with, would probably change the furnishings though. The only purple wall I have in my house is in the bedroom but I sprinkle the rest of the house with it liberally - chairs, cushions, glassware, pictures ... I'd probably go for more if they'd let me! x

      Delete
  6. I just Googled Tanzanite, and wow, you're right, the color is pretty! No wonder you couldn't resist using it in a story...

    ReplyDelete
  7. I love the colour of tanzanites, I got myself a tanzanite ring a couple of years ago because of it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ooh I bet it's lovely. Would like one myself :)

      Delete
  8. My son was born on Dec. 7 - Pearl Harbor Day. Maybe I'll give him something blue for his birthday.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Happy Birthday to your son, that is a great idea :)

      Delete
  9. Hi Suzanne,

    Just had a look at Tanzanite and I was dazzled by that beautiful colour. A lovely blue, this be true.

    Gary :)

    ReplyDelete
  10. Interesting! Tanzanite is my birthstone then. :)
    Hard to believe it's already time for your December birthstone post, I'm still trying to catch up from November LOL.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hi Suzanne .. I love the poem .. and I'm next month - so make me a happy one please! I see it's only used as a gemstone - being soft - I love those soft soapstone gems .. but this looks quite crystal like ...

    Great that you've broadened out your story telling into a modern gem ...

    Cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete
  12. Finally a well allocation I've found here about birth stone. Actually in last December of 2013 my first son was born and I have not any idea about birth stone and this well input clearly gives me sound and handy idea about this issue. Thanks mate :)

    ReplyDelete

I love reading your comments, thank you for taking the time to visit and interact but please note I have disabled anonymous comments due to too much spam!