Sunday, May 16, 2010

Emeralds Anyone?

Fascinated by emeralds? You're in good company. Cleopatra was an avid emerald collector, as were many Indian maharajas and maharanis.

Humans have been mining this green variety of beryl for approximately 5000 years.

The green colour of this stone is caused by small amounts of chromium and vanadium. The highest quality emeralds are a deep grass green colour with a bluish cast and can be more valuable than diamonds.

Emerald is the birthstone for May.

Emerald in calcite and pyrite - photo by Rob Lavinsky

5 carat emerald - photo by Rob Lavinsky

Emeralds often contain inclusions, fissures and flaws. As a result, many emeralds are oiled, a treatment that reduces the visibility of inclusions and improves the clarity of the stone.

The emerald cut – a rectangular or square cut with bevelled corners – was developed to show this stone to best advantage. Removing the corners helps protect this brittle stone from breakage.

Caring for your emeralds: Emeralds should only be cleaned with a soft, dry cloth. An ultrasonic cleaner should never be used on emeralds and one should always remove any emerald rings before putting hands in soapy water. Emeralds which are oiled can dry out, so at times the stones will need to be re-oiled.

Emerald Disc Ring by TJR Jewelry

Natural Emerald and Pearl Chandelier Earrings by Elegance and Sparkles

Beside Myself Stacking Rings - Sterling Silver, Clear Crystal, Emerald by Two Chicks Too

Featuring artisan handmade creations by the Etsy Starving Artists jewelry team. SATeam members create handcrafted jewelry and beads. More information about our team and its current Etsy shop owner members can be found at


Cat said...

I love that second picture!!!

mcstoneworks said...

Gorgeous specimens. The pieces made with emeralds are stunning.

tjrjewellery said...

I'm willing to accept any extra emeralds that people don't want anymore!!


BeadSire said...

Love the colours in these, just stunning.

Anonymous said...

Don't you just love that shiny green stone? Great info, gorgeous specimens, and beautiful jewelry!