Where Glamour gets geeky
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Once thought to be a plant, coral has been called the 'garden of the sea'.
The weird and the wonderful
Made up of the skeletal remains of marine animals called coral polyps, Coral has a dull lustre when first recovered, and while it can take a bright polish it can become dull and fade with constant wear.
Associated with the protection of children, coral is often given to small children by their parents.
History in a nutshell
According to Greek mythology, coral comes from the blood shed when Perseus cut off the head of Medusa. The Greeks and Romans believed it protected against the evil eye as well as stopping blood flow.
A favorite of Chinese carvers for at least two millennia, examples have also been unearthed across ancient Mesopotamian tombs, land-locked Tibet and Mesoamerica; archaeological sites in Western Europe have uncovered decorated shields and helmets from the Iron Age.
Red coral was considered by the Pueblo Indians to be one of the four element stones, along with jet, abalone and turquoise.
Coral is one of the seven treasures in Buddhist scriptures and Tibetan Lamas use coral rosaries.
In 18th century, it was widely used as an inlay in Japanese netsukes.
Thought to relieve tension and fear, and promote positive forms of social life, the color symbolises joy and happiness.
Red coral should be used on the 1st, or Root Chakra, black coral on the 3rd, or Solar Plexus Chakra , and pink on the 4th, or Heart Chakra.