4 Choices of November Birthstone

What is the birthstone for November? In fact, the question is more precisely put, what are the birthstones for November? There are, all in all, 4 birthstones of November, the 11th month of the year. Do you know all the different November birthstones? Read on to see the four types of November birthstone.


A cut topaz stone
Source: Humanfeather / michelle jo via Wikimedia Commons

November Birthstones

  • Modern: Topaz & Citrine
  • Traditional: Topaz & Pearl
  • Ancient: Topaz
  • Tibetan: Pearl
  • Indian: Cat’s eye


Who first comes to this world below
With drear November’s fog and snow,
Should prize the topaz’s amber hue,
Emblem of friends and lovers true.

— Gregorian birthstone poem

Topaz was traditionally the birthstone for November, and remains the November birthstone in modern gemology, though this modern November gemstone is specifically described to be yellow topaz. The history of topaz as the stone for November goes back to the old Arabic, Hebrew, Italian, Roman, Polish and Russian calendars. Before the gemstone found its way into these ancient calendars, topaz was both the zodiac stone for Sagittarius, as well as the zodiac sign’s planetary stone, having been associated with the planet Jupiter and the god of the same name.

In the medieval period the name topaz referred to any yellow gemstones, but the birthstone of November is now limited to topaz that is the transparent silicate mineral of aluminum and fluorine. Being a yellow stone, this gemstone for November is a symbol of optimism, and was closely associated with the sun and the zodiac sign Sagittarius, a zodiac sign noted for its boundless energy and optimism. In addition, the November stone is believed to enhance both physical and spiritual strength.


A cut of citrine crystal
Source: Wela49 via Wikimedia Commons


Like topaz, citrine was also traditionally regarded as birthstone for November, and remains a November birthstone in modern gemology. This birthstone of November is the yellow variety of transparent quartz, a mineral group which includes amethyst. While a lot of gemstones purported to be citrine are widely available in the market, this gemstone for November is in fact extremely rare. The gemstones represented to be the November gemstone in stores may in fact be smoky quartz or inexpensive amethyst subjected through heat treatment. The genuine November stone is believed to rid a person of self-destructive tendencies and stimulate creativity.

Cat's Eye

A magnificent piece of cut cat’s eye
Source: Gemshare at the English language Wikipedia

Cat’s Eye

Cat’s eye is the birthstone for November in the Hindu calendar. Also known as cymophane, this November birthstone is the yellow variety of chrysoberyl, a mineral group which includes alexandrite, the color-changing gemstone. The gemstone is distinguished for its chatoyancy or iridescent luster, which gives the November stone resemblance to the eye of the cat, hence the name cat’s eye.

Cat’s eye is amongst the hardest of minerals. In fact, this birthstone of November is the third hardest gemstone on earth, next only to diamond and corundum (sapphire and ruby). A yellow gemstone, the November gemstone is a symbol of optimism, and is believed to transform negative sentiments into positive thoughts, thereby amplifying good luck.

White Pearls

A white pearl necklace
Source: Emi Yañez , CC BY 2.0, via flickr


Pearl is a traditional birthstone for November from as far back as the 15th century, as well as the November birthstone in the old Tibetan calendar. This stone for November is produced, not by geologic process, but through biological process, where a mollusk tries to coat a foreign irritant with calcium carbonate, commonly known as mother-of-pearl, thereby producing the round gemstone. The November gemstone is a symbol of purity, and is believed to bestow wisdom, and strengthen relationships.

November Birthstone Color

What is November birthstone color? The birthstone color for November is rather very apparent and consistent. Topaz was the traditional gemstone for November from the start, and was thought to refer to any yellow gemstones, most probably including citrine. Citrine, another traditional and modern birthstone for November, is an exclusively yellow gemstone, although this birthstone of November may occur with shades of brown or coffee. To top it all off, cat’s eye, the November stone in the Hindu calendar, is an exclusively yellow gemstone of the mineral chrysoberyl. Indeed, the birthstones for November are characterized by the color yellow. Hence, the November birthstone color is undoubtedly yellow.

If a secondary birthstone color has to be specified, it might be white, since pearl, the last stone for November, is white. Pearl, however, is the primary June birthstone. The birthstone color white is accordingly assigned to the month of June.

Which November birthstone is your favorite?

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Published October 27, 2013Last updated February 15, 2016

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