How are Pearls Formed?

            Right from the earliest times pearls have fascinated people because of their luster and beauty. Real pearls are very precious because they are rare.

            The formation of pearls is very interesting. Oyster a small sea creature produces pearls by coating grit with nacre a pearly layer that lines the insides of its shell.

Pearls in many colors

            When a sand particle gets inside the shell of an oyster it rubs against the animals tender body. To soothe this irritation the oyster starts depositing layer upon layer of the pearly nacre on this particle. These layers of nacre are made up of calcium carbonate which result in the formation of the pearl inside the shell. The pearl so formed is round white and shining. The is the real pearl. However the peals are not necessarily white only. Their colors may be black white pink pale blue, yellow, green, or mauve.

A Pearl in the Oyster shell

            Approximately four thousand years ago a hungry Chinese began to open some oysters to eat on the seashore. Inside one of the oysters he found a small round shiny ball. The shining ball-like object came to be known as a pearl.

            Man has now developed techniques of making artificial pearls. Using these techniques sand particle is injected into the shell of an oyster and it is then kept back in the water. After a couple of years the shell is taken out and the pearl is extracted from it. These pearls are called cultures peals. Japan has perfected the technique of making beautiful cultured pearls. Since pure natural pearls are very costly most people buy cultured pearls. On May 7, 1934 a pearls was found in Philippines with a diameter of 13 centimeters. This pearl weighing about 6.37 kilograms is called the pearl of Laoxi.