November’s birthstone is the topaz! This gem is one of the hardest among all precious stones, measuring 8 on the Mohs’ scale. A diamond measures 10 for comparison! Because of that, you can show it off proudly, but it still is handled with the care it deserves.
History of Topaz
The name of this beautiful gem, often found in yellow tones, is based on the Greek name for St. John’s Island in the Red Sea. Others believe the origins of the topaz date back to ancient India, based on the Sanskrit word topas, meaning fire.
Throughout history, all yellow gems were called topaz, although this gem can appear in a variety of hues. Historians have since determined that topaz never came from that Greek island and that it was originally confused with the gemstone peridot.
Folklore of Topaz
Topaz rose to prominence during the Renaissance, during which time people started to believe the gem could reverse spells. In Hindu folklore, it was believed a topaz could increase wisdom and increase one’s longevity. Meanwhile, in Africa, they were used during healing rituals. It’s also believed to this day that topaz can cool hot tempers and rid people of nightmares.