Is Sapphire Really Your September Birthstone?

Is Sapphire Really Your September Birthstone?


So, is your birthday this month?  Or your mom’s?  Your best friend’s?  You’d like to get a nice sapphire birthstone, but they’re pretty expensive, right?  Too bad.  But wait…maybe there’s another option!

If you’ve kept up with my blogs, you’re an expert now on the history of birthstones, how the ones we use in western culture probably originated in ancient times with the stones which appeared in the breastplate of a Jewish high priest.  The birthstones we associate with months now are not necessarily the same ones that have always been. Color used to be the most important feature of a stone, for example the ancients did not distinguish between a ruby and a garnet.  Also, the historical name may not relate to the stone we think of with that name today, for example, sapphires in the Bible were probably what we know today as lapis lazuli, and diamonds were probably a white sapphire or white topaz. 

As color was historically the primary consideration for a birthstone, often various stones of the same color will represent a particular month.  Conversely, some stones come in multiple hues, sapphires and garnets for example, allowing the wearer to choose their favorite color.

Since ancient times, gemstones, especially birthstones, have been attributed some metaphysical and healing properties.  Today, many feel that wearing a birthstone brings good luck.

 So, what about September?

 Looking at all of the options, September babies have a choice of seven, yes seven, birthstones. 



The most widely known and accepted modern birthstone for September is sapphire.  It is what is called precious corundum.  It occurs in many colors, however in red it is called ruby.  It is the blue sapphire that is commonly thought of as the September birthstone.  Sapphire is a very valuable stone, and is one of the four cardinal, or most valuable gemstones: sapphire, ruby, emerald and diamond.  Gemstones are rated on their ability to withstand scratching based on a system called the Mohs Scale of Hardness, and sapphires score a 9 out of 10. The only natural item that can scratch a sapphire is a diamond.  Some of the stone’s metaphysical properties are specific to the color.  In general, it is the wisdom stone, stimulating concentration and enhancing mental clarity.  Sapphire releases mental tension and unwanted thoughts, lessens confusion and eases anxieties.  It helps restore balance within the body and align the physical, mental and spiritual planes, bringing serenity, joy, peace of mind and hope.  Sapphire attracts gifts and helps fulfill dreams and desires.  Blue sapphire in particular is associated with purity and love.  It facilitates self-expression, and has a calming and balancing effect.  Blue sapphire opens and heals the thyroid and the Fifth Throat Chakra, Vishuddha, which the source of verbal expression and the ability to speak the highest truth, and is also related to the Sixth Third Eye Chakra, Ajna, the center of intuition, imagination, wisdom, and the ability to think and make decisions.  Sapphire is the gemstone for the 5th and the 45th anniversaries.


A modern alternative to sapphire for September birthstone is another lovely blue stone, lapis lazuli.  Its beautiful blue color makes it a natural option for the month. The name “sapphire” actually possibly stems from the Greek sappheiros  which means "blue stone," however this apparently originally referred to lapis lazuli rather than to what we now call sapphire!  Lapis lazuli is a protective stone that enhances self-awareness, insight and intellect. Lapis encourages objectivity, clarity and creativity.  It promotes clear understanding and intuition, and assists in the expression of true feelings.  It releases stress and brings deep peace.  Lapis helps calm the mind, and open the doors to a higher consciousness.  It activates the Fifth Throat Chakra, Vishuddha, which the source of verbal expression and the ability to speak the highest truth, and the Sixth Third Eye Chakra, Ajna, the center of intuition, imagination, wisdom, and the ability to think and make decisions.


Not thrilled with sapphires or lapis lazuli?  Well, there are some other lesser known options for you if you’re willing to be a little less traditional.


Nowadays we think of peridot as the birthstone of August.  But in ancient times in the Italian, Russian, Hebrew and Arabic calendars, it was actually a birthstone for September!  Before that it was already the zodiac birthstone for Libra, which falls partly in the month of September.  Peridot is the gem-quality crystal of olivine, one of the few gemstones that occurs in only one color, an olive green.  The intensity and tint of the green depends on the percent of iron in the crystal structure.  So the color can range from yellow to olive to brownish-green.  As a healing stone, peridot helps alleviate jealousy, resentment, irritation, hatred and greed. It reduces stress, anger and guilt, as well as lethargy, apathy and exhaustion. It opens the heart to joy and new relationships. Peridot enhances confidence and motivates growth and change, enabling you to take responsibility for your own life. It is a great crystal for attracting money and can be of invaluable help on your life journey, supporting you to achieve your dreams. It resonates with the Third Solar Plexus Chakra, Manipura, which is the source of personal power, and the Fourth Heart Chakra, Anahata, the middle chakra that unites the physical and spiritual chakras and is the source of love and connection. 

Yet another historic September birthstone from the old Roman and Polish calendars is sardonyx.  Sardonyx combines alternating layers of sard and onyx - two types of the layered mineral chalcedony - to create a reddish zebra-striped gemstone with white bands. Its name, similarly, combines sard (referencing the ancient Persian city, Sardis, in present-day Turkey, where the red stone was found) with onyx (from the Greek word of the same spelling, which meant “nail or claw.”) Sard ranges in color from yellowish-red to reddish-brown, depending on how much iron oxide is present. Sard is easily confused with carnelian, another type of chalcedony that is slightly softer and lighter in color. Sardonyx, like onyx, shows layers of parallel bands, instead of the chaotic, curved bands that compose agate, another type of chalcedony.

Sardonyx is a highly protective and grounding stone.  It has a vibration of happiness and optimism, and boosts self-confidence and self-control.  It is a stone of strength and courage, and increases stamina and vigor.  It attracts friends and brings happiness and stability to relationships.


In the ancient Ayurvedic or old Hindu calendar, moonstone was the birthstone of September.  Moonstone is the most well-known gemstone of the feldspar group. Named for its glowing color sheen that resembles the moonlight, moonstone displays a unique play of color known as adularescence, the crystal structure of the stone that causes it to look as if it glows from within.  Moonstone is a stone of inner growth and strength. It enhances intuition and strength, and promotes inspiration. It calms and soothes the emotions. Moonstone is also believed to bring good fortune. June birthstone. It is associated with the sixth third eye chakra, also called the brow chakra, located on the forehead between the eyes, which is our ability to focus on and see the big picture.

Zircon is the September birthstone in the Hindu calendar.  It is also the traditional zodiac stone for Virgo, which falls partly in the month of September.  Zircon is often thought of as a cheap diamond substitute, but it is a different gem entirely, and can be quite valuable.  When properly cut, colorless zircons can make beautiful and convincing diamond substitutes and even outshine mediocre diamonds.  Unlike diamond, however, zircon is brittle, and its facet edges tend to chip and wear. Zircons are found in a wide range of colors, and many additional colors can be produced by heat treatments.  (Zircon is sometimes confused with cubic zirconia, an inexpensive, synthetic diamond simulant, but they are entirely different substances.)  Zircon is a protective stone that brings a sense of enthusiasm and joy to its wearer.  It brings solace and peace after traumatic experiences, and assists in moving on after broken relationships.  It increases vitality and charisma.  Zircon promotes clear thinking and positive mental processes.


Agate is the birthstone for September in the old Tibetan calendar.  This is a banded chalcedony that occurs in practically all colors, including the other September birthstone sardonyx.  Agate has warm, grounding, protective properties that encourage a sense of security and self-confidence. It helps to balance yin and yang energy, and to balance and harmonize body, mind and spirit. It is a soothing and calming stone that heals inner anger or tension, and helps eliminate and transform negativity. Agate enhances mental function, concentration and perception. It improves concentration and mental function. Agate can remove blockages from any chakra.

So there you have it, September's Child. Take your pick of some lovely stones and enjoy your jewelry!



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