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October Birthstones are Opal and Tourmaline

Mike and I have a theory about the October birthstones.

Opal and Tourmaline are two of the most unique gems man has ever dug up. Their properties are honest-to-goodness freaky.

So we speculate that sometime in our distant past, a hairy guy with a sharp stick discovered an opal, while over on another savanah another hairy guy with a sharp stick tapped into a tourmaline—and both of them made their discoveries on the day that would become Halloween 35,000 years later!!

You laugh. But consider:

Opal is a soft stone. Why? Because it’s held together with water! Water and stone—you don’t often hear those two words together. But wait.

Because of this unique property, opals are susceptible to changes in temperature. Now along comes the Black Death and people begin to notice that an opal glows brightly when worn by someone afflicted with the plague—until that person succumbs and the opal mysteriously goes dull.

It “turns off” when its wearer dies!

Ergo, Opals cause death!! You couldn’t ask for a more perfect Halloween gem….

Unless you asked for Tourmaline.

This is the ‘gemstone of the rainbow’ because of its endless number of faces. No two tourmalines are exactly alike.Yet they all display the most astonishing physical qualities: tourmalines can become electrically charged when squeezed. No wonder magical powers have been attributed to them since ancient times.

The Dutch get credit for being the first to notice this attribute. But what about that hairy guy with the stick? Surely, he could not miss the fact that when he squeezed his rocky discovery, ash from his fire pit jumped onto the stone. And in fact, the Dutch actually used this feature of tourmaline to draw up ash from their meerschaum pipes!

Opals caused the Black Death. Tourmalines attract ashes.

Wow.

Are we the only ones who see a connection here?

Happy Halloween, Octobrists.

Categories: American Gem Society, Birthstones, Opal, This month's birth stone, Tourmaline