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Pearl History
Pearl History
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Nobody knows when someone first pried open an oyster and found a pearl. With its soft, rainbow-hued inner radiance, that first pearl must have seemed like a magical gift from the gods. Pearls are unlike other gemstones because they do not have to be cut and polished to enhance their natural beauty—they grow into it on their own. No wonder pearls have been prized ever
since for their beauty, perfection, and rarity.

For thousands of years, pearls have been the exclusive gemstones of royalty and nobility in every culture. In China, they were used for over five thousand years to decorate the crowns of emperors, the robes of noblewomen, and the sacred statues of the Buddha.

In ancient Rome and medieval France, only the aristocracy were allowed to wear pearls. In Elizabethan England, only royalty could wear them. Pearls became associated with wealth, status, and power, and ordinary people began to desire them as symbols of these things. Throughout history, millions of people have yearned to wear pearls.

Throughout their history, different cultures have assigned various other meanings to pearls as well. In ancient Greece, they were thought to be associated with love and marriage. The Ancient Hebrews believed that pearls had been used by God to decorate the Garden of Eden. Roman ladies believed that pearls were lucky and attracted wealth. In China, pearls are symbolic of the incomparable beauty of the legendary pearl maiden, XiShi (or Shecy).

Throughout almost all of recorded history, pearls were far too valuable and rare for any but the royalty and aristocracy to afford. However, due to advances in pearl cultivation, growing and harvesting technology, pearls are now affordable and accessible to everyone. Today, you can wear the same string of pearls that, two hundred years ago, only a queen could wear.

Pearls are still cherished today as lovely jewelry. They make tasteful gifts, and are usually passed down as treasured heirlooms for generations.
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