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October Birthstone of the Month

As with Opal, Tourmaline is a birthstone for those who are born on October. Its name was originated from the Sinhalese word 'turmali' which means 'mixed'—fitting since the stone is found in many colors.

Tourmaline has an extensive array of shades you can find on the color wheel. A Dutch trader first found and imported the stone from Sri Lanka in the 17th century. According to the region's legends, each color of a tourmaline represents different virtues and good fortune.

Ancient Egyptians believed that throughout its journey to the Earth, tourmaline passes over the rainbow of which all the colors are inherited. They also associated the gemstone with friendship, love and creativity. A number of healers used tourmaline to cure stomach problems, enhance calmness, and strengthen the nervous system.

Tourmaline's color variety includes dark brown, medium brown, black to bluish-black, blue to neon blue, red, reddish purple, yellow, lime, dark forest green and colorless. Each stone could have two or more colors within it. Some of their kind appears to change shade depending on which angle you look at it.

Tourmaline crystals are usually found in elongated crystal forms and are cut into small shapes. The price is defined according to the uniqueness of the color combination as well as the intensity.

Jewelers commonly use the pink, green, blue and red tourmalines for pendants, rings and bracelets. The hardness of this gem ranges from 7 to 7.5 in Mohs scale which is ideal for any jewelry setting. If you are celebrating your 8th year of marriage, jewelry made of this gem is a perfect gift.

The stone is still sensitive to blows against hard or sharp objects, but is safe for usual everyday wear.

Most of the deposits can be found in Brazil, Sri Lanka, US, Myanmar, Madagascar and Africa.

AT: 10/04/2012 01:58:43 PM  

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