Birthstone: Opal or Tourmaline
With "the fire of the carbuncle, the brilliant purple of the
amethyst and the sea green color of the emerald, all shining
together in incredible union" opal clearly impressed Pliny
the Elder (23-79 AD), Roman historian and author of the world's
first encyclopedia. The Romans had been wearing opals for
centuries and considered them a symbol of hope or purity,
while for the early Greeks they embodied the powers of foresight
or prophecy. The more fancifully minded Arabs thought that
opals must have fallen from heaven in flashes of lightning
thus achieving their unique play of color or "opalescence".
As it is found in all spectrums of color, tourmaline is often
described as the "chameleon gemstone". It is not surprising
to find a fine tourmaline that mirrors the exact semblance
of other gemstones, such as emerald, ruby and sapphire. Some
tourmaline crystals may even appear as crystallized rainbows
with several bands of color, ranging from the most brilliant
red to the deepest blue. Many refer to tourmaline as the "muses'
stone", for they are meant to provide inspiration.
article written by Mike McGinnis and published originally
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