We have an obsession with emeralds! And Emily tends to choose ones that are a little outside the box. She loves the slight blue hue of Zambian emeralds, and the paraiba-like quality of some paler Colombian material. Whether rosecut or super fine quality, we love them all!
Emeralds are one of the four recognized “precious gemstones”, along with ruby, sapphire, and diamond. Emeralds are in the beryl family with aquamarine and morganite, and get their green coloring from trace amounts of chromium or vanadium, they come in all shades of green but the vibrant “emerald” green is the most prized.
The first known Emeralds were mined in Egypt around 1500 BC, it is worth noting that Cleopatra prized these gems so much she granted herself ownership of all mines in Egypt. Today Colombia yields the largest amount, and most valued emeralds today contributing to more than 50 percent of production worldwide, however there are also large mines in Zambia, Brazil, Ethiopia and Zimbabwe.
Emeralds have more inclusions than others in the beryl family but an experienced Gemologist will be able to cut the stone to optimize its color and avoid any inclusions. Naturally internally flawless Emeralds are incredibly rare and can be worth quite a bit of money, sometimes even more than a Diamond.
They land between 7.5 to 8 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness, and while are durable stones the internal inclusions can lead to cracking so some extra care is warranted.
The symbolic meanings of emeralds today are inner wisdom, tranquility, abundance and love, making them especially good as alternative engagement rings.