Opals: Bad Luck or Advertising Hoax?

Opals: October's Birthstone:


Just as the leaves are on fire in October, its birthstone the opal brings to mind firery images.   The Opal is said to hold the fire of a ruby, the royal purple of the amethyst and the sea green of the emerald all glittering within a single stone.  

Throughout the ancient world opals were considered symbols sent from heaven bringing hope and good luck. So why do Opals get such a bad rap today?

Welcome to October in true New England style: the leaves have turned and the weather is irratic.

The Ancient Arabians thought opals were sent from heaven in bolts of lightning. The Ancient Greeks thought of them as Zeus's tears of joy.  Ancient Orientals thought of the opal as the anchor for hope.  

There are two theories as to why the opal is sometimes thought of as bringing bad luck to its owners.

The first story started with the publication of Sir Walter Scott's  book, Anne of Geierstein.  In the story, an opal necklace is used to portay both the good and bad luck of the heroine.  Book critiques started the rumor that wearing an opal would bring bad luck. Within months of the novel being published the opal market crashed.


The second rumor concerning an opal's bad luck started in 1890 in London by diamond dealers.  The discovery of the 1st Black opal  in 1877 had revived the opal market to a point that it was seriously cutting into the diamond market.  Diamond dealers restarted the bad luck rumor causing the opal market to crash again and saving the diamond industry.    


Today opals are popular engagement rings in Japan. The opal is as hard as jade and amethyst, and harder than turquoise, making it an excellent stone for jewelry .  Just think, with the entire rainbow encased in one stone, it goes with everything. 

So whether your birthday is in October, in which case you are always safe wearing an opal, or you are just fascinated with it's fire, Designer Gold wants you to be brave: don't let a bunch of book critiques or diamond dealers scare you away from wearing the fire of an excellent opal.    

Peggy Sadler