Emeralds 101


Emeralds 101 is designed to give you a quick study on a fascinating stone.  In this day and age, less is more.  The same is true for gathering information, no matter what the topic.  However, if you are planning on an Emerald purchase, some education is helpful.  Thus, Emeralds 101.

Mineral Class

First of all, Emeralds belong to the Beryl family.  According to Geology.com, Beryl is colorless and known as “goshenite.”  Trace amounts of chromium in a mineral cause it to develop a green color.  An Emerald is defined by its green color.  Emeralds must have a distinctly green color that falls in the range from bluish green to green to slightly yellowish green.

Additionally, an Emerald it must have a rich color.  Therefore stones with weak saturation or light tones are technically “green beryl.”  If the beryl’s color is greenish blue then it is an “aquamarine.” If it is greenish yellow, it is “helidor.” (https:www.geology.com)

Buying Tips

Next, Emeralds are a hard stone.  They rate 7.5 to 8 on a Mohs scale.  However, Emerald is also a brittle stone, easy to chip or crack.  One way to avoid this is to use an Emerald in a pendant or earring setting. Thus avoiding possible harm to the stone.  If an Emerald is in a ring, make sure to choose a setting that is protective of the stone.  Another way to avoid this would be to only wear the ring on special occasions.  Furthermore, be aware that Emeralds are prone to flaws.

If you have an extremely clear Emerald, be prepared to pay top dollar.  This brings up another valuable point, less reputable dealers may try to mask flaws with oils or synthetic lubricants.  Always check out the stone dealer before any purchase. Furthermore, there are also fake and doublet Emeralds on the market as well as synthetic Emeralds.  Two pale colored stones may be glued together with a deep green paste, creating a stone resembling Emerald.

Faceted green glass also resembles Emerald, and it may be coated with a hard substance to mask its low hardness.  Synthetic Emeralds are also sold to unwary buyers without them knowing the stone is synthetic. Experts can distinguish all these fakes, and it is especially important to only purchase Emeralds from reliable dealers. Experts can also determine if an Emerald was treated with oil or a lubricant to mask internal flaws. (https://www.minerals.net)

Historical Notes

Finally, I like to leave a blog giving a bit of history and lore on a gemstone.  In this case, the Emerald has a long rich history.  The first known Emeralds came from Egypt around 1500 BC.  It is said that Cleopatra favored Emeralds, and her passion for the stone is well documented.  South America began mining Emeralds in the 16th century through the Spanish.

The Spanish traded emeralds across Europe and Asia for precious metals.  This opened up the Emerald trade to the rest of the world. Later, in 1935 synthetic Emeralds were created.  The American chemist, Carroll Chatham, is credited for creating the first 1-carat Chatham Emerald. This stone is now on display at the Smithsonian Institute.

(https://www.thesprucecrafts.com/emeralds) According to ancient folklore, putting an Emerald under your tongue would help one see into the future.  Emeralds were thought to guard against memory loss and enhance intuition.

Today,  the Emerald is still thought to relax and relieve eye strain. (https://www.thesprucecrafts.com/emeralds). In summary, the Emerald is a beautiful stone.  It has a long history and makes for beautiful jewelry.  This is one stone you might want to add to your collection!