October has two beautiful birthstones: Electrifying Tourmalines and Mysterious Opals. Read on to find out more …
Tourmaline is the newer October birthstone, and it offers a dazzling array of colours. It is not uncommon to see a Tourmaline display more than one colour in a stone. The most popular colours are pink and red Rubellite, green “chrome” and neon green “Paraiba” tourmalines, as well as rare, dark blue known as Indicolite.
Tourmaline is commonly found in Brazil but it is also mined in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Kenya, Madagascar, and Mozambique. In the United States, California and Maine are historically important producers of fine Tourmaline.
Tourmaline is a pyroelectric gemstone which means it is naturally electrically polarized when heated. If you rub it against a cloth until it becomes warm and then place it against a small piece of paper, it will pick up the paper. This quality is said to give Tourmaline the power to exhilarate the spirit.
This beautiful birthstone is rated 7-7.5 on the Mohs scale and is suitable for everyday wear. Best cleaned with warm, soapy water and a soft cloth.
The beautiful colours displayed in Opals recalls the glories of a bright October day in the country, with blue skies and autumn leaves mysteriously dancing around at every movement.
Bedouins once believed opal held lightning and fell from the sky during thunderstorms. Others thought opals bestowed the gift of prophesy and protection from disease and were a symbol of purity, hope, and truth.
Opals did not appear for use as a birthstone until after the beginning of the 15th Century. It is designated as the gem of hope because of its myriad of colours, similar to a rainbow. But, in the nineteenth century, a superstition started about the opal as a stone of bad luck, based on a novel written by Sir Walter Scott named “Anne of Gierstein”. However, Queen Victoria loved opals which restored the Opal to its place of favor. Queen Victoria gave each of her daughters an opal on their wedding day as a symbol of good luck. Opal is also the stone given for a 14th wedding anniversary.