Scientific Information - Opal is a hydrated amorphous form of silica. This substance is actually not considered a mineral! It is considered a mineraloid. Opal gives off a beautiful iridescence that looks like flashes of colors. Opal varies in opacity depending on the condition in which it was formed. It can appear translucent, transparent, or opaque.
Revealed by Man - Opal has been a prized gem in Europe for ages and has commonly been associated with royalty. Until the 19th century, there was only 1 source of Opal, a Roman frontier in Slovakia. Since, a massive deposited has been found in Australia.
Legend and Lore - Opal is October's Birthstone as well as the stone to commemorate a couple's 14th year of marriage. The Greeks referred to Opal as "Opallios", meaning you can watch it "change color". Opal has long been associated with love and passion.
Scientific Information - Tourmaline is one of the most vibrant gemstones in existence. It is a makeup of multiple different minerals, not a singular gem. The mineral can be found with multiple colors, such as the watermelon Tourmaline above, and it can also come in singular colors.
Discovered by Man - Tourmaline is believed to have been first discovered by conquistadors in Brazil sometime during the 16th century. There is large deposits in Maine and California. Tourmaline was very popular in China, where some of the largest deposits are.
Legend and Lore - Tourmaline was originally named by a group of Dutch traders off the coast of Italy during the 1600's. It was also used by Russian royalty throughout history as a symbol of strength. The mineral is also thought to be beneficial to artists, authors, and actors, bringing creativity.
Learn more about minerals & fossils.