The Ultimate Emerald Guide


Emeralds are one of the most popular and rarest gemstones on the market. If you’re thinking about adding an emerald or two to your collection, you’ll want to go over a few of the basics. That way, you can buy jewelry sets and pieces with confidence. For instance, some people think emeralds are only available in green when they are also available in different shades of green, such as blueish-green or yellowish green. Knowing that will help you expand your choices. 

Emerald Essentials 

  • The emerald is one of the four precious gemstones. The others are diamond, sapphire, and ruby. 
  • Emerald is the birthstone for people born in May. 
  • The gemstone is made from the same stone as the aquamarine. Both come from beryl. 
  • Vanadium or chromium is the source of the gemstone’s green coloring. 

Emerald History

  • Some of the oldest emeralds known in the world are about 2.97 billion years old. 
  • Some of the first emeralds were mined around 1500 BC. They were found in Egypt. 
  • Cleopatra loved emeralds. History has a lot of stories about her passion for the green gemstone. 
  • The Spanish discovered emeralds in South America in the 16th century. It wouldn’t be long before the Spanish trade would happen, where the Spaniards traded emeralds across Asia and Europe. They exchanged the gemstones for precious metals. Soon after, the emerald was known throughout the rest of the world. 
  • It wasn’t until 1935 that synthetic emeralds were made. Synthetic rubies and sapphire were already around much earlier. They were invented in 1907.

Emerald Symbolism

  • Emeralds are thought to protect against memory loss. The gemstone is also said to improve intuition. 
  • The color of emerald has soothing properties. It is said to help relieve eye strain. 
  • There’s an ancient folklore says you can see the future if you put an emerald under your tongue. 

Emerald Market Value 

  • Emeralds can cost more than diamonds on a per-carat basis. That goes for high-quality emeralds. 
  • Most emeralds have imperfections, which are called inclusions. Some dealers refer to these inclusions as jardin, which means garden in French. 
  • Four factors determine the value of an emerald: cut, clarity, color, and carat weight. Color is the most important of the four factors, though. The best emeralds are vivid green. Blueish-green emeralds are also high-quality gemstones, especially those with even saturation. These pieces are unlikely to have any color zoning.
  • Valuable emeralds are often transparent. They’re not too light or too dark, though. Some green beryl might be in a shade of green that’s too light. Some gemologists don’t consider that an emerald. 
  • As for market value, Elizabeth Taylor’s emerald pendant necklace was sold in 2011 for $6.5 million. 
  • If you’re wondering about size, one of the largest uncut emeralds in the world is the Duke of Devonshire Emerald. The gemstone weighs 1,383.93 carats. 

Emerald Buying 

  • Buy them from a reputable shop online. 
  • Check the color. Does it look authentic? 
  • Consider the cost. Is your budget enough? 
  • Look at the reviews. What does it tell you about the shop’s merchandise? What about its reputation? Pay attention to complaints that mention the quality of the company’s inventory.


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