Australian Opals: The Most Sought-After and Valuable Gemstones
When talking about the finest and most desirable types of opal, Australian opals come on top of the list. It is no wonder that Australia accounts for 95 percent of the world’s opal mining industry. With so many opals being extracted from different mines in Australia, it is no surprise that these precious gemstones dominate the global market. The value of an Australian opal is determined by various factors such as its natural state, brightness, clarity, country of origin, color, pattern, and play of color.
Characteristics of Australian Opals
Unlike any other gemstone, Australian opals are not a homogeneous group. Each piece has distinct variations that make it unique. While there are smaller deposits of opals in other countries, Australian opals are recognized as the best. Australia’s opal fields are situated in New South Wales, Queensland, and South Australia. Lightning Ridge in New South Wales is famous for black opals, while Boulder opals are found in Queensland. Milky or white opals, on the other hand, can be mined in South Australia.
The most valuable type of Australian opal is the black opal that comes from New South Wales. Additionally, the White Cliffs area in this location is home to rare opal pineapples, which are fossilized pieces of opal. Boulder opals are unique to Queensland and have unusual patterns due to their formation process. Crystal opals consist of a translucent to semi-transparent background. Meanwhile, water opals resemble crystal opals but feature a faint play of color. Play of color patterns vary, including pinpoint with little patches of color, mosaic or harlequin with broader patches of color, flame with reddish streaks, and peacock with mostly green and blue hues.
|Types of Australian Opals||Description|
|Black Opal||The most expensive type with a darker base color and vibrant display of colors.|
|Boulder Opal||Found in Queensland, these unique opals have unusual patterns due to their formation process.|
|Crystal Opal||Semi-transparent or translucent background featuring varying patterns of play of color.|
|White Opal||The most common type of opal and known for its pearly appearance.|
Benefits of Australian Opals
Australian opals serve as a substitute for diamonds in astrology. These precious gemstones promote imagination and creativity, making them perfect for artists and people with innovative ideas. Wearing a high-quality white Australian opal is believed to be beneficial towards financial prosperity. White opals are associated with the planet Venus, according to horoscopes, and bring about wealth and economic stability.
Apart from its astrological value, Australian opals are said to have restorative and healing properties that help in curing various ailments. They are also good for individuals with hormonal disruption, liver complications, psychological issues, and reproductive problems, mainly when they wear white opals. Additionally, this gemstone is associated with the planet Venus which governs love and relationships. Hence, wearing white opals can help improve personal relationships in love and business affairs.
Why Australian Opals are Special
Opals are one of the oldest gemstones globally, with records dating back to 4000 BC. In Rome, people referred to them as opalus, a Latin word meaning precious stone. Precious opals are classified based on their vibrant color display, which gives them the name of fire opals. The multi-dimensional bright color display is unique to these valuable gemstones. Opals come in different colors such as blue, green, orange, purple, red, yellow, or black, depending primarily on the background color, which is due to impurities present in the silica.
The Australian black opal is considered the most expensive among all opals. Valuing an Australian black opal can be challenging since it comes with distinct features unique only to that piece. Each piece usually has several bidders willing to pay about $10,000 per carat. Given that no two opals have the same characteristics, there is always a high demand for these precious stones.
|Blue Opal||A rare color displayed in some opals.|
|Green Opal||One of the common colors of an opal often associated with growth and healing.|
|Orange Opal||Distinctive color seen in some opals creating a flame-like pattern.|
|Purple Opal||A rare opal color that is associated with power and authority.|
|Red Opal||Displays the colors of the rainbow along with red, which creates a unique pattern.|
|Yellow Opal||The base color for Australian light opals, it creates a warm and nurturing energy.|
In conclusion, no other gemstone matches the beauty, quality, and value of an Australian opal. The combination of different patterns, colors, and natural state makes each piece of Australian opal unique. These precious gemstones are famous not only for their physical appearance but also for providing astrological benefits and healing properties to those who wear them. Australia’s terrain and formation history result in a perfect environment for the growth and mining of world-renowned opals prized by people worldwide.