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Freshwater pearls

Freshwater pearl cultivation started in China on 13th century and is still going strong to this day. The Chinese used to put premade shapes, for example like Buddha inside the mussel and nacre grew over it, and that's how pearl culturing started. The freshwater pearls grow in rivers, lakes and ponds inside the freshwater mussels. For a long time freshwater pearls were considered the 'ugly duckling' of the pearl family. The pearls were small in size (diameter 5mm, when saltwater pearls average diameter can be 10mm and up) and the luster wasn't that great, mostly dull. Most of the pearls were baroque shape, meaning uneven surface and a lot of blemishes (see picture for nr.11 and nr.12). As freshwater pearl is...

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