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Parents have loved names that belong to precious or semi-precious stones as far back as the Victorian period. It is believed that the popularity of one name inspired the search for other names of the same genre. As Margaret, which translates to Pearl, gained steam, Pearl soon followed; and by the end of the nineteenth century, Ruby, Opal, Beryl, and Onyx had become favorites among namers throughout the English speaking world.
Since gems are often used in jewelry, many of these names are more commonly used for girls than boys. However, there are a few gemstone names that are suitable for both genders.
 Commonly Used Gemstone Names
The most popular gem names today include:
- Amber: A yellow translucent fossil resin. Amber became popular in the 1970s and is not uncommon among today’s baby girls.
- Jade: A hard ornamental stone that is most often green or white. Jade is currently riding a wave of popularity for girls but is also occasionally given to boys.
- Mica: A thin, crystallized, translucent mineral stone While Mica is widely known as a gemstone it is also a feminine Hebrew name formed from Michael.
- Pearl: Technically not a gemstone but rather a growth formed by oysters. Pearl is nonetheless regarded as a gemstone name and enjoyed terrific popularity during the Victorian era. Pearl is once again on the rise for baby girls.
- Ruby: A deep-red variety of the mineral corundum. Ruby was a popular Victorian girls name that is again on the rise, particularly in the United Kingdom.
- Crystal: A clear, translucent quartz used in New Age rites and rituals.
 Rare Gems
These gemstone names are still relatively uncommon and will add a dash of intrigue as either a first or a middle name:
- Amethyst: This purple gemstone takes its name from the Greek word amethystos, meaning "not drunk”. The Greeks believed that wearing this gem would protect them from intoxication. It is also the birthstone for the month of February.
- Beryl: A hard, lustrous mineral that can take form as an emerald or an aquamarine.
- Diamond: One of the hardest substances known to man and a symbol of enduring love and exquisite value. It is also the birthstone for the month of April and a semi-popular name among African-American families.
- Flint: A kind of quartz best known for its ability to produce sparks. One of the few gemstone names that is primarily used for boys.
- Garnet: A deep red mineral that gets its name from the Latin granatus, which means "having seeds” because small garnets resemble the seeds of a pomegranate. Garnet is also the gemstone for January.
- Turquoise: A blue-green stone that is widely found in the western U.S. Its name comes from a Middle English word for Turkey, where it was originally discovered.
- Jacinth: A reddish-orange precious stone of the zircon family. Jacinda is the most common variation of this name.
- Jasper: An opaque, multi-colored quartz that is common in the western U.S. The name is of ancient Persian origin and means "lord of the treasure." It is a boys name that has enjoyed periodic bouts of popularity over the past century and is currently enjoying a resurgence.
- Jett: A hard black mineral that is suitable for girls and boys.
- Onyx: A gray-to-black agate common in men's jewelry.
- Opal: A glassy, translucent silica composition that both reflects and refracts light. It is also the gemstone for the month of October. Opal has enjoyed significant popularity as a girls name although it is now quite dated and generally regarded as an “old lady name”.
- Sapphire: A blue variety of the mineral corundum.
- Topaz: A common gemstone that is available in white, yellow or blue. Blue topaz is the gemstone for the month of December.
- Emerald: Perhaps the best-known form of the mineral beryl. Emerald does not enjoy the popularity of the other well known green gem, Jade.