The Meaning of Opal: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the meaning of the gemstone opal? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the stone opal, including its meaning, usage, origin, and more!

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What is the meaning and usage of the opal?

According to Crystal Vaults and Jewels for Me, the opal is the birthstone of the month of October along with pink tourmaline. The opal is also given to traditionally celebrate the 14th year of marriage. While people commonly hold the misconception that the opal brings bad luck and is an evil stone, this is not the case and is the fault of Sir Walter Scott who wrote the 1829 novel Anne of Geuerstein. In the novel, Lady Hermione is falsely accused of being a demoness. She dies  shortly after a drop of holy water accidentally falls on her opal and destroys its color. People thought the author was implying that the opal was bad luck, and he destroyed the European opal market for almost 50 years. Later in 1877 after a black opal was found in New South Wales, Australia, the opal market was revived thanks to the Australian opal. Many people refused to wear opals during this time such as Empress Eugenie, wife of Napoleon III of France. Queen Victoria, however, thought the superstition was ridiculous. In Asia, people continued to view the opal as a symbol of hope.

In Medieval times and the Middle Ages in Europe, blond maidens wanted a necklace made of opals because they believed it would keep the hair from darkening or fading. It was also thought to make a person invisible whenever he wished, and for that reason, it was called a patronus forum, or patron of thieves. In ancient times, the opal was a symbol of fidelity and assurance. It was also associated with religious emotional prayer and thought to have a therapeutic value for diseases of the eye. It was thought that if you wore an amulet of opal, it would make you immune from disease as well as increase the powers of the eyes and the mind. Nowadays, the opal with its display of fire can spark creativity. This dance of fire helps people enjoy their lives. The opal is associated with the sacral chakra, which can help people with addictions and moderate and harmonize sexual desires. 

According to Fire Mountain Gems, the word and name opal comes from the Sanskrit upala, which means precious stone. In ancient Indian Mythology, the virgil Goddess of the Rainbow was turned to opal by Mother Goddess. This is because she was being chased by the suitors Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. According to the Ancient Greeks, the stone can give people the gift of prophecy and protect them from disease. During these times, the Latin opalus and Greek derivative Opallios meaning “to see a change of color” came to be. 

There are many different natural varieties of opal: the opalescent precious opal, the green opal, yellow opals and pink opal, the fire opal which has the colors of yellow to red-orange, and the generally opaque common opal. In the 1970s, French manufacturer Gilson created the first opalescent imitation opal. Natural opals are considered  non-crystalline, hydrated silicon dioxide gemstones and can contain up to 30% water. These minerals create a beautiful play of color when the light hits correctly. 

Opals have a lot of physical healing energy and emotional healing energy. The opal can disperse infections, purify the blood and kidneys, help to regulate insulin production, reduce fever, water retention, stabilize neurotransmitter disturbances like Parkinson’s Disease, stimulate memory, and help with female hormones during childbirth, PMS and menopause. This protective stone can regulate emotions and emotional state, act as a seductive stone for eroticism, or a karmic stone to help with the heart chakra, throat chakra and aura.  The opal is used to present a calm sense of security. This stone can ease stress and depression, and encourage a person to stop routing. The opal is an antidote to restless thoughts and racing minds that can cause anxiety or rehash the past and anticipate the future. The opal is used to center the mind and can bring happy dreams to adults and children who have recurring nightmares. This is also a stone of protection that helps people from absorbing other people’s negative thoughts or energies. It uses refraction to provide a cloak of invisibility or run interference around challenging people or situations. 

Opals are also considered a seductive Stone and are associated with desire, love, passion and eroticism and are used to intensify what someone is feeling. They can be used to release inhibition. Be careful though, because the refractions of the stone divide and Scatter energy so one should be well centered before using an opal to amplify these feelings 

There are many different types of opal besides the common opal. There is the Andean Opal or Peruvian Opal, Black or Precious Black Opal, Boulder Opal, Ethiopian Opal, Fire Opal or Mexican Fire Opal, Girasol Opal, Green Opal, Prase Opal, Hydrophane Opal, Matrix Opal, Milk Opal, Moss Opal or Dendritic Opal, Oregon Opal, Owyhee Blue Opal, Water Opal, Hyalite, White or Precious White Opal, and Wood Opal or Opalized Nature. 

The opal is the birthstone for the month of October. Below is a list of the other birthstones. See if you can find yours in the below list from GIA!

  •  January – Garnet
  •  February – Amethyst
  •  March – Aquamarine
  •  April – Diamond
  •  May – Emerald
  •  June – Pearl, Alexandrite
  •  July – Ruby
  •  August – Peridot
  •  September – Sapphire
  •  October – Opal, Pink Tourmaline
  •  November – Citrine, Topaz
  •  December – Turquoise, Blue Topaz

Overall, the opal is a hydrated amorphous form of silica and a precious gemstone. The chemical formula of Opal is Si02 nH20. This stone is the birthstone of the month of October.


  1. Opal Meaning, Powers and History | Jewels for Me 
  2. Gemstone Information – Opal Meaning and Properties | Fire Mountain Gems 
  3. Opal Meaning and Uses | Crystal Vaults 
  4. Birthstones | Birthstone by Month | GIA