Menilite

  • Menilite, also known as liver opal, hails from Ménilmontant in Paris, France, and is found within early Oligocene Menilite Shales.
  • Often occurring in marls, gypsums, and shales, Menilite opal is a formation in its youth, yet to recrystallize into quartz.
  • The fascinating substance displays a wide array of colors, from greyish-brown to liver brown, and even occasionally blue hues.
  • Its rich history dates back to early 19th century mineralogical categorizations and it continues to be a captivating subject for gem enthusiasts and geologists.

Imagine the streets of Ménilmontant, Paris, in the late 18th century. Nestled within this historical French district, early geologists made an intriguing discovery—Menilite. Dubbed after its place of origin, this enigmatic form of opal has a story as rich as its color spectrum.

Menilite or liver opal—affectionately nicknamed for its distinct color—is a sight to behold. You’ve got to love its greyish-brown hues, akin to the warmth of chestnut intertwining with the earthiness of liver brown. Occasionally, you’ll even spot a bluish tinge on the surface, adding an extra dash of mystery to this mineral marvel. It’s a little gem hiding in plain sight, tucked away within the early Oligocene Menilite Shales.

In the geological world, Menilite opal is something of a youngster. Rather than a polished, recrystallized quartz, it is commonly found within the cozy confines of marls, gypsums, and shales. It’s the kind of gem that reminds you of how diverse and multifaceted our Earth truly is.


Menilite wasn’t just stumbled upon—it was meticulously documented. Cast your mind back to the year 1816 and the renowned “System of Mineralogy” by Jameson. It was there that Hoffmann put Menilite on the mineral map, dividing it into two sub-species: Brown Menilite (Leberopal) and Grey Menilite.

The Brown Menilite—its external surface rough, dull, and almost always tuberose—never grows larger than a fist but makes up for its size with character. Picture chestnut-brown or liver-brown stones with a sometimes bluish exterior. Our Spanish friends have been known to uncover these within their diatomaceous earth deposits. Interestingly, the interiors of these nodules are hard, compact, and polish up quite nicely, making them a solid choice for opaque lapidary work.

On the flip side, there’s the Grey Menilite, boasting a more compressed structure than its brown sibling. These yellowish-grey stones, with occasional wood-brown undertones, can be found at Argenteuil near Paris, snugly embedded in clayey marl and gypsum. Their smoother exterior surface presents a marked contrast to the roughened texture of the Brown Menilite.

It’s fascinating to note that despite Menilite’s classification as an opal, it holds about 10% water or organic matter. This characteristic only adds to its intrigue, further blurring the line between mineral and rock.


Menilite Meaning and Symbolism

When you hold a Menilite opal, you’re not just grasping a mineraloid—you’re holding a symbol, an embodiment of life’s rich tapestry. It’s like a geological whisper from the past, brimming with tales yet to be told.

Menilite, our greyish-brown gem from the heart of Ménilmontant, Paris! Its swirling patterns and warm hues weave a story of resilience and strength, symbolizing the capacity of nature to sculpt beauty under pressure—much like life’s challenges mold us into stronger beings.

Imagine this stone, formed through time and natural forces, nestled in your palm. Doesn’t it feel like a small guardian from the Earth herself? Its mere presence is a silent vow of protection and perseverance, a tangible symbol of endurance against all odds.

Menilite, with its striking earth tones, also stands as a symbol of healing and grounding. It’s like Mother Earth’s own brand of therapy, reminding us of our connection to the natural world. So, next time you find yourself holding a Menilite opal, remember—you’ve got more than a stone in your hand. You’ve got a tiny, solid piece of resilience, a symbol of healing, and a testament to the wonders of the natural world. Talk about a gem with a message!

Menilite Healing Properties

  • The comforting presence of Menilite can help you to better navigate life’s ups and downs, fostering resilience and emotional balance.
  • Embrace the emotional journey with Menilite, discovering a more grounded, resilient, and emotionally aware self.
  • Menilite’s grounding energy is a beacon of spiritual guidance, encouraging deeper connection with oneself and the universe.
  • The spiritual journey with Menilite unveils a world of inner peace, balance, and a profound sense of belonging within the vast tapestry of existence.

Unearth Your Emotions with Menilite

Picture Menilite, its soothing greyish-brown facade etched with time, a testament to resilience. It’s like having your own personal cheerleader, whispering tales of endurance and strength. Just holding this gem, feeling its cool, comforting presence, can inspire a sense of calm and stability amidst life’s emotional storms. It’s not just a pretty face, folks. It’s like a silent vow to keep you grounded when life gets a bit too wild.


Menilite isn’t just here for the tough times. It’s a stone for all seasons, a companion for the journey of self-discovery and emotional growth. This gem subtly encourages emotional intelligence, helping you better understand, express, and navigate your feelings. It’s as if Menilite gently nudges you, saying, “Hey, let’s figure this emotional stuff out together.”

Ignite Your Spirit with Menilite

This enigmatic gem, born from the womb of Mother Earth, is eager to be your spiritual guide. Its beautiful hues are like a painted canvas of spiritual whispers, waiting to reveal profound truths and awaken your spirit.

Think of Menilite as a spiritual compass, with its energy acting as a magnet, drawing you closer to your inner self. By fostering self-awareness and introspection, it encourages a deeper exploration of your spiritual dimensions. It’s as if Menilite tells you, “Hey, let’s discover the universe within.”

But Menilite’s spiritual gifts aren’t just about the journey inward. This stone also symbolizes the intricate connection between you and the universe. Imagine Menilite as a celestial bridge, linking your spirit to the cosmos, and fostering a sense of belonging in the grand cosmic play. It’s a spiritual experience akin to standing under a starlit sky, feeling the vastness of the universe, and knowing you’re an inseparable part of it.

Menilite Metaphysical Properties

  • Menilite holds a special connection with the crown chakra, aiding in spiritual growth and enlightenment.
  • The warm earth tones of Menilite help in balancing the crown chakra, enhancing your spiritual connection to the universe.
  • Open your crown chakra with Menilite and experience a sense of tranquility, unity, and spiritual awakening.
  • Menilite is a celestial gift, helping Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn align with their earthly roots and harness their intrinsic strengths.

The Crown Chakra’s Best Friend

Imagine, if you will, a serene river flowing within you, connecting you with the essence of the universe itself. At its source? Your crown chakra, the spiritual powerhouse that connects you to the higher realms. And which gem is there to help you tap into this celestial river? None other than our humble friend, Menilite.

Remember the captivating swirls of Menilite, each hue whispering tales of Earth’s grandeur. These earthy tones are just what your crown chakra needs to strike the perfect balance. It’s like a cozy blanket, comforting and soothing your crown chakra, helping you nurture a deeper spiritual connection with the universe. Can you feel it? The serene energy, the sense of unity, the tranquility…that’s Menilite working its magic on your crown chakra.


Astrological Vibes: Menilite and Earth Signs

If you’re a Taurus, Virgo, or Capricorn, give yourself a pat on the back—you share a cosmic bond with the intriguing Menilite. Just as these signs are rooted in practicality and stability, Menilite resonates with similar earthy vibes, making it a match made in the heavens!

Picture Menilite, with its earthy tones reflecting your grounded nature. Its comforting presence reinforces your pragmatic approach to life, acting as a constant reminder of your roots in the Earth element. It’s like a grounding cord, connecting you to Mother Earth and encouraging you to harness your inner strengths.

And there’s more! This greyish-brown gem is a symbol of resilience, a quality that Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn have in abundance. As you journey through life’s ups and downs, Menilite serves as a silent partner, bolstering your natural resilience and determination.

How to Use Menilite

Ever wondered how to add a little pizzazz to your meditation sessions? Here’s a hint: it involves a certain greyish-brown gem called Menilite. That’s right! This earthy stone could be your ticket to a profound meditative journey.

Picture this: you’re sitting in your favorite meditation spot, the calm silence enveloping you. In your hand, you feel the cool, soothing presence of Menilite, its energy resonating with your own. Can you feel it? The harmony, the unity, the peace that’s washing over you—that’s Menilite, turning your meditation into a mystical dance of the soul.

But wait, there’s more! Menilite isn’t just a passive partner—it’s an active guide, helping you navigate the labyrinth of your inner self. It’s like a torchbearer, illuminating the path to self-awareness and mindfulness. So go ahead, meditate with Menilite, and discover a world within that you never knew existed.

Harmonizing Spaces: Menilite in Feng Shui

Who knew that a humble greyish-brown gem could turn your space into a beacon of harmony? That’s right, Menilite is not just any stone—it’s a Feng Shui superstar! With this gem by your side, you can balance your space’s energy like a pro.


Imagine Menilite, with its earthy tones and calming aura, sitting in your living room. It’s like a silent guardian, stabilizing the energies and keeping negativity at bay. And the best part? It does all this while blending seamlessly with your decor—talk about a multitasker!

But don’t stop at the living room. Bring Menilite into your workspace, let it breathe its tranquility into your office chaos. It’s like a dose of serenity in the hustle and bustle, promoting balance and stability even in the most stressful of environments.

Inviting Menilite into Your Everyday Life

Ready to bring some Menilite magic into your everyday life? Well, you’re in for a treat! This enigmatic gem is more than ready to jazz up your home and work life with its earthy charisma and soothing energy.

Picture Menilite sitting on your nightstand, its calming presence enveloping your room. Each morning, you wake up to its soothing energy, setting a serene tone for your day. And when the day winds down, it’s there again, helping you unwind and shed the day’s stress. It’s like having your very own peace ambassador!

And Menilite isn’t shy about tagging along to work either! Picture it on your office desk, a beacon of tranquility amidst the sea of files and deadlines. It’s like your own private oasis, grounding you, stabilizing your emotions, and helping you navigate the workday with ease.

Menilite vs. Menalite

In the vast world of gemstones, it’s easy to mix up names, especially when they sound as similar as Menilite and Menalite. But make no mistake—these two are as different as chalk and cheese!

Menilite, the fascinating gem from France, is a variant of opal known for its liver-brown color, earning it the name ‘liver opal.’ Discovered in the Early Oligocene Menilite Shales, it has a close bond with bituminous shale deposits. It’s a storyteller, speaking of the earth’s quiet transformation over millions of years, one shale layer at a time. Its greyish-brown hues and tuberose form reflect the slow, steady rhythm of geological time.


Menalite, a real globe-trotter, formed in the Quaternary deposits left by receding glaciers. Found in the depths of the Great Lakes in Canada, Menalite has a cool backstory that’s as unique as its appearance. Formed from fine sand, clay, and calcium-rich calcite, it dances into various smooth and rounded irregular shapes. Its color palette is more like a delicate symphony—ranging from white, off-white to cream, and even pale beige/brown or pale grey.

Frequently Asked Questions About Menilite

What is Menilite?

Menilite is a greyish-brown form of the mineraloid opal. It’s often called liver opal or leberopal due to its color.

Where was Menilite first discovered?

Menilite was first discovered in Ménilmontant, Paris, France, hence the name.

How is Menilite formed?

Menilite is formed as opaline concretions within marls, gypsums, and shales. It’s often considered a young form of flint nodule before it recrystallizes to quart

What does Menilite look like?

Menilite usually appears as tuberose or rounded nodules, seldom larger than a fist, with a rough and dull external surface.

What is the color of Menilite?

Menilite is typically greyish-brown, often compared to the color of a liver, hence its nickname, “liver opal.”

Is Menilite used in jewelry?

Yes, Menilite, particularly the Spanish variety found in diatomaceous earth deposits, can be used in opaque lapidary work due to its hard and compact interiors which can take a good polish.

What are the two sub-species of Menilite?

Hoffmann divided Menilite into two sub-species: Brown Menilite (Leberopal) and Grey Menilite (Grauer Menilite).

Where can Grey Menilite be found?

Grey Menilite has been reported to occur at Argenteuil near Paris, where it’s found embedded in clayey marl and gypsum.

Is Menilite a mineral?

Menilite is a form of opal, which is a mineraloid, not a mineral. This is due to the lack of a crystalline structure in opal.

What are the physical properties of Menilite?

Menilite is an opaline concretion containing about 10% water/organic matter. It’s typically greyish-brown and occurs as tuberose or rounded nodules.

What’s the difference between Menilite and Menalite?

Menilite is an opal variant found in bituminous shale deposits, while Menalite is a calcium-rich material found in Quaternary deposits left in lakes by receding glaciers. They differ in their formation processes, appearance, and color.

Menilite and Fairy Stone are the same?

Menilite and Fairy Stone (also known as Goddess Stones or Menalite) are two different stones with unique properties and origins, but they are often confused due to the similarity in their names.
Menilite is a greyish-brown form of the mineraloid opal, also known as liver opal due to its color. It’s mainly found in bituminous shale deposits, particularly in the Early Oligocene Menilite Shales in Ménilmontant, Paris, France.
On the other hand, Fairy Stone, or Menalite, is a calcium-rich material formed in Quaternary deposits left by receding glaciers. They are most commonly found at the bottom of the Great Lakes in Canada. Fairy Stone or Menalite are known for their unusual smooth and rounded shapes, often resembling abstract figures, hence the name ‘Goddess Stones’. The color of these stones can vary from white, off-white to cream, pale beige/brown, or pale grey.

Menilite and Goddess Stones are the same?

The names Menilite and Goddess Stones (Fairy Stone, and Menalite) are sometimes used interchangeably in different contexts, leading to some confusion. This is because the terms are not strictly standardized, and different sources may use them differently. However, these terms generally refer to distinct types of stones with unique characteristics and origins.
Menilite is a form of opaline concretion typically found in the Early Oligocene Menilite Shales in Ménilmontant, Paris, France. It’s often referred to as liver opal due to its distinctive greyish-brown color.
On the other hand, Fairy Stones, also known as Menalite or Goddess Stones, are calcium-rich deposits left by receding glaciers. They are typically found at the bottom of the Great Lakes in Canada. These stones have smooth and rounded irregular shapes and can range in color from white to pale grey or beige.

What’s the difference between Menilite and Gogotte?

Menilite, is a variant of the mineraloid opal, often characterized by its greyish-brown hue. Named after its first known occurrence in Ménilmontant, Paris, Menilite is typically found within bituminous Early Oligocene Menilite Shales. It forms opaline concretions in marls, gypsums, and shales, displaying a tuberose shape with a rough and dull external surface. Its brown variant, Leberopal or “Liver Opal”, is treasured for its chestnut-brown color, sometimes with a hint of bluish tone.
Gogotte, on the other hand, is a white, highly porous form of quartz sandstone found in the Fontainebleau region of France. Formed during the Oligocene epoch, it’s known for its peculiar, organic-like shapes sculpted by water over millions of years. Gogotte is highly prized among collectors and sculptors for its intricate forms and natural beauty.


Menilite Physical Properties
Crystal StructureAmorphous
Mineral ClassMineraloid
Specific GravityApproximately 2.1
FormulaSiO2·nH2O
HardnessApproximately 5.5-6 on Mohs Scale
TransparencyOpaque
Chemical CompositionPrimarily Silicon Dioxide with water content
LocationsMainly found in Ménilmontant, Paris, France
RarityUncommon
Can Be Submerged in WaterYes, but should not be left for prolonged periods as it may damage the stone
Sun Safe CrystalYes, but exposure to strong sunlight over time may cause color fading
Special Care InstructionsKeep away from harsh chemicals. Clean with a soft, dry cloth
Price/CaratApprox. $10-$50 per carat, but can vary widely based on the quality and source
Menilite Metaphysical Properties
ChakrasCrown Chakra (Sahasrara)
Zodiac SignsTaurus, Virgo, Capricorn
PlanetsEarth
Numerical Vibration5
ElementsEarth
SymbolismTransformation, Grounding, Wisdom
BirthstonesNot typically used as a birthstone
Affirmations“I am grounded and centered in my physical presence.”, “I embrace transformation and growth in my life.”, “I trust in the wisdom of the universe.”
Emotional ConditionsHelpful for stress relief, may assist with emotional grounding, may aid in the alleviation of worry and overthinking
Spiritual PurposesFacilitates spiritual transformation, encourages wisdom and intuition, enhances connection to the earth
Crystal CombinationsOften combined with grounding stones such as smoky quartz and black tourmaline, transformation stones like labradorite, and intuition-enhancing stones such as amethyst

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