Black Opal  D.44313 Click to enlarge image
Black Opal. Lightning Ridge, New South Wales, Australia. 1.3 x 1.7 x 0.3 cm, 2.98 carats. Registered 1976, D.44313. Image: Ross Pogson
© Australian Museum

Australian black opal is the most prized and most valuable type of precious opal. It has vibrant colours superimposed on a dark or black background. This opal was purchased from famous Sydney jeweller, Percy Marks, in 1976 as part of a group of very fine precious opal gems.

This example is a polished oval cabochon with predominant green and blue flashes in a pattern called ‘harlequin’, which has colour patches of rectangular or diamond shapes on a dark background. New South Wales declared the black opal its gemstone emblem in 2008.

  • Origin

    Lightning Ridge, New South Wales, Australia

  • Size

    1.3 x 1.7 x 0.3 cm, 2.98 carats

  • Date

    Registered 1976

  • Collection number


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