Friday, 1 November 2013

Birthstone Unicorns - Topaz

Welcome to November and another birthstone post. Topaz is the traditional birthstone for this month. It is usually found in shades of yellow, gold and brown perfect for the days of autumn. Although it can also be found in various shades of blue, green and pink. There is even a colourless topaz! Said to promote feelings of happiness in the wearer, it is associated with loyalty, faithfulness and friendship. Health benefits are thought to be related to balancing emotions and easing tension. Not one of the gems I can say I own yet, but I think they are so beautiful I hope to add one to my collection soon.

Want to learn more? Read on for some fun facts and myths surrounding this gorgeous gemstone.


  • The most famous topaz is one of the colourless variety! Due to this it was originally thought to be a diamond. At 1680 carats it is known as the 'Braganza Diamond' and can be found in the Portuguese Crown Jewels.
  • In the 19th century pink topaz was discovered in Russia. So prized that ownership was only allowed by the Czar and family.
  • The Egyptians believed that topaz's golden glow came from the sun god, Ra. They wore it to prevent injury.
  • The Romans too believed there were connections with the god of the sun, Jupiter. They also thought it improved eyesight.
  • Whilst Ancient Greeks thought it had the power to enhance strength or even make the wearer invisible in times of emergency!
  • During the Middle Ages they thought it helped heal physical and mental disorders and might even prevent death.
  • Sufferers from disorders as diverse as insomnia, burns and asthma were told powdered topaz cured in wine might alleviate their symptoms.
  • Other 'health' benefits suggested over the centuries include,making you more intelligent, curing sadness and even curing the sores caused by the plague. Set in gold and worn round the neck it was said to ward off bad charms. It has been said to change colour in the presence of poisoned food or drink. 
  • It's mystical powers were thought to be strongest in moonlight and to alter with the phases of the moon.
  • Topaz is a hard gemstone but it can be split with a single blow, so should be protected from hard knocks.
Born in November? Here is the verse from the Gregorian poem by unknown author.

"Who first comes to this world below
In dreary November's fog and snow
Should prize the topaz amber hue
Emblem of friends and lovers true."

                                                   
Learnt something new today or celebrating this month? Check out the link at the top of the page to catch up with an excerpt from Topaz the Birthstone Unicorn's adventure. Have fun! 

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Before I go just time to add a short weekly celebration, thanks to Viklit at Scribblings of an Aspiring Author for hosting. Visit her blog to find out more and join us!


This week I'm celebrating;
  1. Adding another 2,000 words to my WIP
  2. Finally getting to actually see the woodpecker who lives in the tree in our garden. I've heard it many times, visitors to our house have seen it but until this week I haven't caught so much as a glimpse! However, something very tasty is obviously living in our grass at the moment and he has been strutting around the garden as if he owns the place!
  3. Cleaning the oven - enough said!



40 comments:

  1. Congratulations on the word count and woodpecker sighting.
    I wouldn't want to test the invisibility theory of topaz...

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  2. I wonder if the greeks knew something we don't or they were just out to lunch lol

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  3. Congratulations getting another 2000 words down, and seeing the woodpecker! I bet that was fun :)

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  4. I do own a couple of Topaz stones as it is my birthstone, didn't know it brought happiness to the wearer... I have to go dig them out now lol

    Ugh cleaning the oven is so tedious, glad you got yours done. Aww on the woodpecker and big yay for those 2000 words :D

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    1. I hope they bring you much happiness :)

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  5. Congrats on getting another 2,000 words complete and also for the lovely read about the Topaz.
    Yvonne.

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  6. I was grinning hugely by the end of that list - topaz seems to be some sort of wonder drug!
    I'm going to read the Unicorn excerpt to my boys now. Have a great weekend, Suzanne xx

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    1. Aww thanks Helen, hope they like it.
      Happy weekend to you all x

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  7. Topaz are beautiful stones. And here's to those 2,000 words. Yay!

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    1. They are lovely and I think so appropriate for the time of year.

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  8. 2,000 words - that's awesome. Congrats! And I bet that woodpecker is a cutie.
    I always love your birthstone posts. I think I will try powdered topaz and wine next time I have insomnia. My guess would be it was the wine that really worked for those people LOL.

    Enjoy your weekend!

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    1. Yeah you might well be right there Julie!

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  9. Always such interesting facts about the birthstones-- thanks for sharing what you learn.

    As for that oven, oh, sure.. remind me mine needs to be done!

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    1. It's one of those jobs I put off as long as possible! Glad you enjoyed the facts.

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  10. As a kid we use to go to Topaz Mountain and look for the gems.

    Congrats on the word count.

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  11. I didn't know anything about topaz, and I loved the info, especially on the colorless and pink varieties. Congrats on 2000 new words in the WIP and on seeing the woodpecker! Cleaning the oven. Argh. I did mine last week. It was awful and I commiserate. Have a good weekend! :-)

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    1. Haha I think we all hate cleaning ovens! Glad you liked the topaz facts.

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  12. As a crazy member of a stone club, I have to say that Topaz is a favorite of mine! Oh I have so many favorites...LOL! Happy cleaning and happy week-end!

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    1. A stone club, that sounds interesting maybe I should join!

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  13. My high school ring is a topaz stone. And congrats on writing another 2000 words!

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  14. Great things to celebrate. Takes a lot of discipline to write 2000 words. And anytime I see feathered or furred doing their thing I find myself feeling happier. A clean oven \O/.

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    1. I know what you mean, I love seeing wildlife.

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  15. Hi Suzanne .. love the topaz snippets - fun to read and learn about .. it always amazes me how many of the precious stones can be various colours/ranges ...

    Love seeing the woodpeckers stride about the lawns looking for juicy worms! Congrats on your WIP count ..

    Cheers and happy weekend - Hilary

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    1. Hi Hilary, I hope Mr. (or Mrs.) Woodpecker sticks around.

      Happy weekend to too.

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  16. Ah Hello Mr Woodpecker! Glad you saw him.

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    1. Me too, I was beginning to think I was hearing things!

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  17. Thanks to you Suzanne, I learnt so much about Topaz. Now I want to buy one for myself. And adding 2000 words to your WIP is great.

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    1. Yes I want one too, Rachna. Glad you enjoyed the facts.

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  18. I love Topaz… thanks for all these new facts! Who knew? (Well, apart for you, obviously)

    Good luck with the oven (what, they need cleaner?) and well done one the word count. Kudos! Going great guns.

    shahwharton.com

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    1. I always seem to be coming across some new or interesting fact concerning birthstones. Glad you enjoy learning about them too.

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  19. Sounds like the superhero of the gem world - complete with weak spot! Congrats on the word count and the oven - mine needs done badly. If NaNo goes wrong, maybe that's where I'll end up!

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    1. A superhero? Interesting thought, Nick! I'm sure NaNo will go great, happy writing.

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  20. Interesting info about topaz...and getting to see the woodpecker, that's cool! We have a few of those every year - must keep them away from the house though! Ours like to try and drill holes in the walls.

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  21. I loved the Topaz facts, especially how each era thought it cured/heeled something. Cleaning the oven is a chore, but you feel amazing afterward!

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