October Birthstone – Opal
The October Birthstone is one of my personal favourites, Opal. From Australian Black opal to the unique red of Mexican Opal, every single stone is different.
“October’s child is born for woe,
And life’s vicissitudes must know,
But lay an opal on her breast,
And hope will lull those woes to rest.”
As the October birthstone depicts, Opal is often associated with values such as innocence and hope. Opal is one of the most revered stones that is said to contain both healing and metaphysical properties. It is indeed a stone with a unique history and of great cultural symbolism. There are many different types of opals and trying to find them can be a real challenge.
October Birthstone Significance
The ancient Romans considered the opal as a instrument of hope. Orientals also held a similar meaning and that is why the fondly referred to it as the Anchor of Hope. Most of these symbolic meanings emanated from the belief that Opal originated from heaven after a lightening strike. Legend had it that it had the powers to make a wearer invisible and protect from spies and burglars. Its unique beauty and ability to change its colors has made it to be associated with health and purity.
The opal has quite an interesting story that tends to accentuate its importance and value. When rubbed against the fist or when warmed slightly over fire, it can attract paper and ash. It is for these qualities that it occupies a special place in the discovery of electric conductivity by Benjamin Franklin. In the world of romance and medieval history, it is said to have been worn by Cleopatra in her bid to woo Mark Anthony, the then ruler of Rome. In recent history, Queen Victoria is said to have been fond of gemstones. Like other rulers before her who wore crowns, she believed that it could protect against evil. In many cultures, opal was believed to contain powers to bring fortunes and good health to the wearers. It was considered a lucky gem that contained virtues equal to its range of spectrum of colors. The Russians however did not have flattering views for the Opal and most believed that it was evil. Most of the rulers in Russia forbid its adornment as jewelry.
October Birthstone Color
Like its name suggests (changing in color), opal comes in various shades of colors. The black, the most magnificent, comes in a black shade with a hit of rainbow. White Opal has a calming white background with flashes of spectral colors. Crystal opal is also very elegant and it comes with transparent body with spectacular finishes.
Like most birthstones, Opal is believed to contain several healing properties. It is believed to cure eye infections and have calming psychological effects on an individual. It also helps boost an individual’s creativity and memory strength. It helps get rid of negative emotions such as jealousy and aids in the maintenance of peace and tranquility both within and without. The opal is also believed to enhance beauty and sexual virility. Pregnant women used to wear it in the belief that it would alleviate child bearing pains. Girls would also wear it so as to postpone conception and restrain hair growth in undesired areas hence enhancing their beauty.