In ancient mythology, pearls were thought to be heavenly dewdrops caught by shells rising from the seabed and believed to be sacred to the Roman moon goddess Diana.
Freshwater pearls grow in a baroque or irregular shape and are formed inside a freshwater mussel. Their rounded saltwater cousins are known as cultured pearls.
Signifying peace, beauty and friendship, pearls are the perfect present for a blushing bride.
Pearl is the gemstone given to mark a 30th wedding anniversary, or Pearl Jubilee.
It is also the birthstone for June.