fortune as long as the golden skull remained in his possession.
Evidently the opals took nothing in his opinion from the luck-producing
quality of this grewsome ornament ; indeed, it seems more probable that
they added to it.
curious modern talisman is the work of M. Charles Bivaud, who has
frequently exhibited splendid specimens of artistic jewelry at the
Paris Salon; this talisman cleverly combines artistic merit with a dash
of African magic. It is a slender bracelet composed of interlaced
spirals of oxidized silver and gold; around the circlet is twined a
hair taken from an elephant. Among the tribesmen of the iSoudan the
hairs of this animal are believed to be endowed with great talismanic
virtue; indeed, they enjoyed a similar repute among the ancient Romans.
Whether this belief was due to the idea that the wearer of the hair was
assured a mighty protection, typified by the enormous strength of the
elephant, or whether to the fact that the elephant was with some
peoples a divine symbol, we cannot easily determine.
opal has long since emerged from the slight cloud of disfavor due to a
most erroneous fancy that it was in some way associated with ill-luck.
This idea, possibly in its origin explainable by the comparative
fragility of the gem, found a consistent and earnest opponent in the
late Queen Victoria, whose influence did much to make opals
fashionable. Of late years they have become favorite bridal gifts, the
exceptional variety of color in the beautiful examples from the White
Cliff mines in New South Wales, having also contributed to the renewed
popularity of the stone. A parure of these opals was not long since
bestowed upon the Empress Augusta by Emperor William of Germany, and
one of the finest Australian opals is a treasured possession of the
Duchess of Marlborough.
A very attractive example of symbolic jewelry has lately been made by a jeweler's firm of Besançon, France. This