Emerald is the most precious member of the beryl family; the name is derived from the Greek “smaragdos”, which means “green stone”.
The wonderful green color is produced by chromium present in the gemstone. The vibrant color won’t fade, as it is stable regarding light and heat. As with many gemstones the color varies depending on the source or the location the gemstone was found. Apparently the most favorable color is a strong slightly bluish green.
Colombian emeralds are a pure green with a slight tint of blue. There are significant deposits, especially in the Muzo mine northwest of Bogotá.A 60 carat Colombian emerald set with approximately 25 carats of diamonds on yellow gold. Market value US$240,000
Brazilian emeralds are a slightly lighter color of green with more yellow noticeable, often slightly cloudy, but most often without inclusions. Deposits have been found in Bahia, Goias, and Minas Gerais and while relatively new deposits, discovered since the 1980s, Brazil has become one of the most important suppliers of emeralds!From Northeast Brazil...A fully terminated, semi-gemmy Emerald crystal...Measures about 1/2" across...semi-gemmy means "clear in spots but not completely"
Zambian emeralds have good clarity are are a deep green. Other deposits have been found in Russia, Afghanistan, Australia, Ghana, India, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Tanzania, Vietnam, China and the United States.
These lovely emerald crystals are from Wenshan, near Kunming, Yunnan Province, China
Here is a natural, grass green Emerald (Beryl) crystal from the Lao Cai Province of Vietnam
Famous Emeralds can be found at the British Museum of Natural History in London, England, the American Museum of Natural History in New York, in the treasury of Russian, in the state treasury of Iran, in the Treasury room in Topkapi Palace, Istanbul, Turkey and in the Viennese treasury in a vase is a gem 4 ¾ in (12cm) high, weighing 2205cts, cut from a single emerald crystal.
Most emeralds are not clean, having some imperfections such as cloudy, cracks, inclusions of fiber, tremolite rods, some of which make the emerald sensitive to pressure…hence the emerald cut was designed to maximize the color while the rounded corners help to minimize chipping and breaking of the corners.
It is common for emeralds to be dipped in a specific type of oil or sometimes prepared with an artificial resin in a vacuum if they have hairline fractures or other faults…this is usually done in the country of origin. The FTC in the United
States requires a disclosure of this kind of treatment.
While not my favorite gemstone I have to admit these lovely gems have grown on me…a nice set of emerald earrings or perhaps a bracelet would be nice…what do you think???
CheersNatural gem photos courtesy of "Orbital Joe"
Emerald jewelry courtesy of "Swamibu"
I thank both Orbital Joe and Swamibu for allowing me to use their wonderful photographs! More of their amazing work can be found on Flickr.com
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