November Birthstone: Topaz & Citrine
Birthstones are a long-standing tradition. Each month is associated with specific gemstones, creating a connection between the stones and those born at that time. Birthstone jewelry is often considered an excellent gift option, though many people also buy pieces for themselves. Knowing the November birthstone, you can find the perfect jewelry gift for a loved one or a special treat for yourself.
What is the Birthstone for November?
Both topaz and citrine are considered to be the November gemstone. While topaz is often referred to as a stone, it's technically a hard silicate mineral. The colour of the topaz is based on defects or impurities in the crystal structuring, leading to some rich and intriguing hues and a lot of variations.
Citrine is a quartz variety and has been popular since ancient times. You often see citrine in engagement rings from the Edwardian and Art Deco eras being integrated into bold, eye-catching designs. However, its appeal certainly didn't end even as those periods ended.
November's Birthstones in History
November Birthstone Topaz
- Ancient Egypt: The ancient Egyptians believed topaz was coloured by the golden glow of the sun god Ra. This made the gemstone a powerful amulet that protected the faithful against harm.
- Greek Mythology: The Greeks believed that topaz could increase one's strength and make its wearer invisible in times of emergency.
- Medieval Europe: Topaz was thought to heal physical and mental disorders in medieval times. It was also believed to prevent death.
November Birthstone Citrine
Merchant's Stone: Citrine is often called the "Merchant's Stone" because it's thought to help attract wealth and prosperity. Many business owners keep a piece of citrine in their cash registers for good luck.
Healing and Energy: In various cultures, citrine is a stone of light, happiness, and abundance. It is believed to transform negative energy into positive energy.
Spiritual Connection: Some believe that citrine helps connect the spiritual self with higher divine forces, aiding in spiritual development and enlightenment.
While not scientifically proven, these legends and beliefs have been a part of human culture for centuries and add a fascinating dimension to these already beautiful stones. Whether you're wearing them for their beauty or the mystical powers they're said to possess, Topaz and Citrine have captivated people for generations.
WHAT COLOR IS THE NOVEMBER BIRTHSTONE?
The November birthstone color is generally considered to be yellow. Both topaz and citrine come in hues ranging from yellow to brownish orange to bright golden yellow to lemon to pale yellow. In fact, "citrine" is the French word for lemon, a nod to its bright, sunny colouring.
Yellow topaz and citrine have such similar colouring that they are often mistaken for one another. However, topaz can also come in a range of other colours, so one could argue that the November stone colour isn't restricted to yellows. Colourless, pink, violet, and natural blue topaz gemstones are readily available. Additionally, topaz can be red, though this is relatively rare
The Imperial Topaz, an orange, pink, peach, or champagned-hued crystal found in Russia and Brazil, is one of the rarest and, therefore, most expensive versions of the topaz stone. It's so highly desirable that it also often goes by "Precious Topaz." However, other colours may also be included in the "precious topaz" category, such as pink or natural blue, though they aren't often associated with the "imperial topaz" group.
The colourless topaz may also be dyed. Many blue and reddish topaz stones you find in stores today are colourless topaz that have been dyed. Like the "Mystic Topaz," the rainbow effect topaz stones are also artistic creations. A thin film is placed over a colourless topaz and then sealed, allowing light to shine through film and stone to create the amazing hues.
Since topaz comes in so many colours, you aren't limited to yellow topaz when you want to find November birthstone jewelry. You can technically explore many other colours, though many may consider the yellow variety the most closely associated with the month.
Geological Origins of Topaz and Citrine
When it comes to the fascinating world of gemstones, understanding their origins can add another layer of appreciation. Let's journey beneath the Earth's surface to explore where November's birthstones, Topaz and Citrine, come from.
Topaz is a silicate mineral that forms in igneous rocks, specifically in pegmatites and in the cavities of rhyolites. In simpler terms, it's born from molten rock that cools and solidifies under the Earth's crust. This gemstone is found in various parts of the world, but some of the most notable sources include Brazil, Russia, and Pakistan. Brazil's Minas Gerais region is particularly famous for its rich deposits of these high quality topaz gems, including the highly prized Imperial Topaz, which boasts stunning orange, pink, and peach hues.
On the other hand, Citrine is a variety of quartz, one of the most abundant minerals on Earth. It's often found in hydrothermal veins, essentially cracks in the Earth where mineral-rich hot water flows. Over time, as the water cools down and evaporates, it leaves deposits that eventually form crystals like citrine. Brazil is also a significant source of citrine, but you can find it in other places like Madagascar and the Ural Mountains in Russia.
A Shared Space
Interestingly, topaz and citrine can sometimes be found in the same locations. This is because the favourable conditions for forming quartz crystals are often also suitable for topaz. So, if you're a gemstone hunter, finding one could mean you're close to discovering the other!
Understanding the geological origins of these gemstones not only adds a layer of intrigue but also uniquely connects us to the natural world. Whether set in a beautiful piece of jewelry or admired in its raw form, each stone carries a story that began millions of years ago, deep within the Earth.
NOVEMBER BIRTHSTONE JEWELRY
There are plenty of jewelry options for the birthstone for November. Both topaz and citrine can be cut and faceted. You can find them in many traditional shapes, including emerald, heart, oval, marquise, round, pear, and princess.
However, if you prefer the look of a polished, smooth cabochon, you're in luck. Both topaz and citrine cabochons are available as loose stones or in November birthstone jewelry, just like their shaped counterparts.
Both citrine and topaz jewelry options are pretty easy to find. Topaz and citrine birthstone jewelry can include rings, necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and virtually any other kind of piece one could want. You can find topaz jewelry that focuses on a single topaz colour and some that feature several topaz gemstone hues.
Citrine is no different, regularly found in nearly any kind of fine jewelry. Plus, if you opt for citrine, the high availability makes even larger stones reasonably affordable. It could be easier to find bold statement jewelry pieces made of citrine that won't break the bank.
The November birthstone topaz can also be incredibly affordable, depending on the colour and whether the stone is in its natural state. Both natural blue and red topaz are rare, so they tend to be a bit pricy and may be hard to find. However, dyed blue topaz, clear topaz, and other colours aren't as challenging to locate. This can bring the price down dramatically.
As far as supporting metals, topaz and citrine jewelry can commonly be found in gold, white gold, and silver. In some cases, rose gold or platinum might be used, though not as often as the other metal options.
Multi-gemstone jewelry with topaz or citrine birthstones is frequently available, as well. Finding pieces that also include diamonds isn't typically a challenge. You may even see jewelry with other kinds of gemstones, such as amethyst and peridot, alongside the November birthstones.
STONES SIMILAR TO THE NOVEMBER BIRTHSTONES
Several gemstones can have the yellow colouring traditionally associated with citrine and yellow topaz. Smoky and colourless quartz can be treated to create vibrant, sunny hues, such as the bright lemon quartz, making them suitable alternatives.
Sapphires can also be yellow, and yellow sapphires aren't usually as expensive as their pink and blue sapphire counterparts. There are also yellow garnets and heliodor (also known as golden beryl), which can both have a sunny colouring. However, in any of these cases, the yellow gemstones might not be as affordable or readily available as citrine.
On the more expensive end sits yellow diamonds and yellow tourmaline. The yellow diamond colouring can range from a pale yellow color to a bright canary, depending on the nitrogen content in the crystal that leads to the tint. It can have amazing clarity when the stone is high-quality. When it comes to yellow tourmaline, these stones are incredibly rare. Not only do they tend to be expensive, but inclusions are common.
November Birthstone FAQs
Why does November have two birthstones?
November has two birthstones—Topaz and Citrine—mainly due to their similar colour ranges and historical confusion between the two. Both stones come in warm hues, often yellow or orange, making them interchangeable for many people. Having two options also allows for more variety and affordability in birthstone jewelry.
Can Blue Topaz be a birthstone for November?
Traditionally, the yellow variety of topaz is considered the November birthstone. However, since topaz comes in various colours, including blue, some people choose blue topaz as an alternative. It's not the classic choice, but it's generally accepted.
What are the powers of citrine?
Citrine is often called the "Merchant's Stone" for its supposed ability to attract wealth and prosperity. It's also believed to transform negative energy into positive, promote emotional well-being, and aid spiritual development. However, these beliefs are rooted in folklore and not scientifically proven.
Is citrine a rare gem?
Citrine is not a rare gemstone. It's a variety of quartz, one of the most abundant minerals on Earth. Its affordability and availability make it a popular choice for jewelry, especially in larger statement pieces.
What is the spiritual meaning of the November birthstone?
The spiritual meaning of November's birthstones varies by culture. Topaz is often associated with love, affection, and strength, while citrine is linked to light, happiness, and spiritual enlightenment. Both stones are thought to carry positive energies and healing properties.
What does the topaz symbolize?
Topaz symbolizes love, affection, and a strong mental capacity. In ancient cultures, it was believed to provide strength and protection. The stone is also associated with loyalty, friendship, and the joy of life.
Is Topaz November or December?
Topaz is traditionally associated with November. While blue topaz is sometimes considered an alternative birthstone for December, the primary birthstone for that month is turquoise.
What colour is topaz's birthstone?
The traditional colour for the topaz birthstone associated with November is yellow. However, topaz comes in various colours, including blue, pink, and even clear. The most prized is the Imperial Topaz, which has orange, pink, and peach hues.
When did citrine become November's birthstone?
The date when citrine became recognized as a November birthstone is not well-documented. However, its similar colour to topaz and affordability likely contributed to its acceptance. It has been popular for centuries and is now widely accepted alongside Topaz for November.