The birthstones for May have a very interesting quirk in common: their ancient lore boasts of the stones’ abilities to protect health – from curing ailments and insomnia, to protection from drowning!
Most cultures and traditions acclaim the emerald as May’s official birthstone – and it still is today – but the unofficial May birthstones are beautiful alternative options when you are birthstone shopping
Read on, my friends, or click on any link below to learn more about May birthstones and whatever snippet tickles your fancy.
May Birthstone Color
As the natural color of emeralds, the May birthstone color is also a true emerald green.
Green is often used as a symbol of peace and safety. When you think about nature’s use of the color green, you can see where other meanings of growth, change, healing and fertility stem from.
Traditional & Modern Gem:
The emerald was a popular and coveted stone in ancient times. Old cultures used to give lots of meaning to color – thus the emerald garnered much of its own meaning and lore from its rich green color.
May Birthstone Meaning
Love, Honesty, Wisdom, Health
The emerald is a symbol of faith, hope, and long life. It was believed to sharpen the mind, improve memory, and become a more persuasive speaker. The emerald is said to bring great powers of reasoning and increase loyalty in relationships.
Facts & Mythology
Legends and myths about the emerald are found everywhere in ancient history. They were said to be carried from the nests of griffons and would make snakes lose their sense of sight. They were also said to actually absorb light and give off that light in the dark.
They say that the emerald is a copper stone – meaning that the stone’s powers are strongest when the gem is set in copper.
Other myths and folktales claim that the emerald had the power to…
- help the owner see the future,
- dispel magical enchantments,
- cure illness and disease,
- heal one from poison,
- improve eyesight,
- give protection at sea,
- and soothe tired or overstressed eyes.
The emerald is also known as the seasonal stone of spring. It was revered as the stone of truth and was popularly used to discover the honesty of a lover’s vow.
Alternative Birthstones For May
Most ancient traditions honor the emerald as the May birthstone. But several ancient cultures and traditions used other birthstones for May. Here are some alternative birthstones to choose from, along with a brief synopsis of their meanings and mythology.
Agate is said to protect against evil and danger of all kinds. Myths claim that it makes the wearer friendly, influential, helps one overcome all obstacles. It was also believed to cure insomnia and bring happy dreams.
This stone was believed to protect sailors from drowning and drive away ghosts and apparitions.
Many legends praise carnelian for its ability to “check blood flow” or rather stop excessive bleeding. It is said to bring good luck, drive away all evil, and bring courage and boldness to the wearer.
May Birth Flowers
The traditional birth flower for May is the hawthorn plant. It symbolizes hope, happiness, best wishes to the recipient.
Lily of the Valley
The modern birth flower for May – the lily of the valley – represents sweetness, humbleness, and a return to happiness.
Sources For September Birthstone & Flowers: See sources listed on the Birthstone Color Chart page.