Centuries ago, in Sanskrit writings, spinel was called the daughter of ruby, adored, yet somehow different. The Crown Jewels of Great Britain are graced with spinels and have resided in the regalia of kingdoms throughout history.
Found in Myanmar (Burma) and Sri Lanka, spinel comes in a variety of colors including oranges, pinks, blues, lavenders, mauves and vivid reds. While common in sizes up to 2 carats, larger gemstones can also be acquired.
Spinel is thought to protect the owner from harm, to reconcile differences, and to soothe away sadness. However, the strongest reasons for buying a spinel are its rich, brilliant array of colors and its surprising affordability.
In 2016, the American Gem Trade Association, American Gem Society and Jewelers of America agreed to bestow official birthstone status on the underappreciated spinel. It is now an official birthstone for August, along with peridot.