Did you know that October has two birthstones, opal and tourmaline? Each of them has an interesting history as well as an inherent historic spirituality.
The opal’s iridescence and the rich spectrum of tourmaline’s colors give a variety of beautiful choices to October babies. In 1912, the National Association of Jewelers established an official list of birthstones, which included opal and tourmaline as October’s stones. In 1952, October birthstones were updated to opal and pink tourmaline.
Opal comes from the Greek word opallios, which translates as “to see a change in color.” Each opal diffracts light in a unique manner, giving the stone the appearance of a kaleidoscopic rainbow. The Romans valued the opal as the most powerful stone of all, and the Bedouins believed opals had fallen from the sky during storms, trapping lightning within them. The opal is said to bring about happiness and protect the wearer from negative influences. However, certain superstitions claim that opals will only bring good luck to those born in October!
Tourmaline comes from the Sinhalese word tura mali, which translates as “stone of mixed colors.” While minerals in the tourmaline family share similar crystal structures and physical properties, their differing chemical makeups cause tourmalines to have a greater color variation than any other mineral group. Tourmaline stones are able to become electrically charged through the addition of heat, allowing the stone to attract or repel particles of dust. Tourmaline was once used by ancient magicians as a shield against forces of evil and negativity. Today, it is thought to promote meditation, spirituality, and wisdom.
Regardless of the month in which you were born, both of these stones are beautiful – and our jewelers have created many handcrafted pieces using them!