Had this interesting thought the other day:
Ruby = Spartans
Sapphires = Samurai
Both warrior cultures, very different focus and spin.
Leads me to find other cultural links between my Realms and the real world.
Garnet = pre-Revolution Russia, right before the change
Diamond = Finns (stoicism)
Peridot = Canada (+USA? Possibly...)
Amethyst = Beijing? Hong Kong? (a la Blade Runner)
Topaz = California? (That's a whole culture right there...)
Aquamarine = Carribbean. (with enough PotC , of course, Yo ho!)
Emerald = The steamy jungles of the Amazonian Basin?
Pearl = Australian Outback (the aboriginal peoples there refer to the "DreamTime" culturally. Research cue!)
Opal = The irish / scottish celtic cultures...with a serious dose of gypsy nomadicism!
Turquoise = Switzerland? (Neutral, Make great timepieces)
Always interesting, this exploration of the possible links that can be called upon. Now to keep the brain focused enough to make use of that in the tales...