September and October

A pic of my Sapphires I took a few years ago, near the start of this blog.

A pic of my Sapphires I took a few years ago, near the start of this blog.

Logan Sapphire, National Museum of Natural His...

Logan Sapphire, National Museum of Natural History, Washington DC (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Chrysoberyl (FOV: 8mm) ::Locality: Mi...
English: Chrysoberyl (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

September’s birthstone is the last of the precious gems. Sapphire.

The 182 carat (36.4 g) Star of Bombay, housed ...

The
182 carat (36.4 g) Star of Bombay, housed in the National Museum of
Natural History, Washington D.C., is a good example of a blue star
sapphire. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sapphire is a variety of Corundum, which Ruby is also a variety of.  Interestingly enough, Ruby is red Corundum, and Sapphire is every other color of Corundum. It is just that jewelers and buyers prefer blue Sapphires, so now everyone comes to think of Sapphires as always blue. A Sapphires (and occasionally Rubies) grow, sometimes a Chrysoberyl crystal will be growing inside the Sapphire at the same rate of growth as the Sapphire itself! Chrysoberyl has a very interesting growth pattern, i.e, sort of outward in a six-pointed star. Once the Sapphire grows up around the Chrysoberyl, the Chrysoberyl’s “crystal solution” is shut off, and so the Chrysoberyl stops growing. Later, miners come, pick it out of the rock, and eventually it gets shipped off to a jeweler. The jeweler (using a lens) is barely able to see that there is a Chrysoberyl inside the Sapphire, so he cuts the Sapphire in a cab, and polishes the stone. Now, Chrysoberyl normally has a very profound cat’s-eye effect, and when light shines through the Sapphire, it goes down the the Chrysoberyl, bounces off in the form of a cat’s-eye, and comes back to our eye, shining through the Sapphire as “lightning” strikes in the form of a six-pointed star.   Sapphire would best fit the personality of someone fairly social, though likes to be alone to recharge. He would usually be quiet in a social event, then suddenly become intensely social, as they get into the party. However, this person would normally know when to stop going all out, and go back to be a quiet, yet reserved person.

white opal as a dropform cabochon

white opal as a dropform cabochon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For October, the birthstone is Opal. Opal is a unique stone, and observed superstitiously for centuries. During the Black Death, men said that Opals seemed to turn very bright once people caught the plague, yet much earlier it was considered a stone of good luck, as it possessed the colors (and therefore the virtues) of all other stones. Then, in the 1800’s, Walter Scott published ‘Anne of Geierstein’. This book featured a tragic death because of an Evil Opal. Because this book was so popular, people attributed death and tragedy with Opal, and Opal sales dropped by 50%!! They stayed this low for about twenty years before coming back into popularity. Opal’s signature firey colors are because of the atom arrangement; the atoms are formed in layers, plate upon plate, and so light shining through the stone is bent, and only a few wavelengths make it out, into the eye.     Opal is much like the personality of someone who, when you first meet, seems reserved and shy, but when you get to know them, they turn out to be bursting in color and happiness. Probably someone who would talk a lot, they would be loyal to their friends and always trying to make them happy, or to amuse them.

 

 

 

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