Other Names: Precious coral, red coral
Origin of Name: Greek Word «κοραλι» meaning coral
Meaning of the Stone:
Family: Corallium rubrum
Region: Australia, Algeria, Italy, France, Spain, Japan, Taiwan, Mauritius, Cuba
Color: Red, pink, rarely white, light blue, black
Hardness (Gravity): 3.5-4 (2.6-2.7)
1. Legend and History:
Coral has been found in archeological sites which date back to 10.000BC; It was very popular in Ancient Egypt for the art of jewelry making, but also in Celtic tribes, from which it is believed to have got its name from.
Coral had a great trade associated to it in the beginning of the Christian Era, from the Mediterranean to India where it was believed to have many mystical powers.
The Romans believed that coral, when hung around children’s necks, would protect them from danger.
It is believed that coral sharpens the mind, and cleanses the urinal path but also heals problems of the eyes.
2. Origin in nature and use:
Coral, is in fact a species of marine life, and is the common name given to the specific species of corallium rubrum, It is rather durable in the form of a gemstone and used for many types of jewelry.
The hard skeleton of coral is matte in its natural form, but most often polished up to provide a glossy shine when used in jewelry. As coral is relatively soft however, it is usually cut en cabochon or used in order to make beads.
3. Interesting Facts:
In Ancient Greek Mythology, I is said that Poseidon, the God of the Seas, lived in a palace which solely made out of coral.
4. Care and Storing:
Coral should be protected from heat, sweat, and beauty products which may make it fade and loose it’s natural color. There are however techniques for coral to get back its color, mainly by dipping it into hydrogen superoxide. Soap and water is recommended in order to clean coral, while heat and ultrasound should be avoided.