The Exquisite Emerald

Author: Priyanka Arora

Emerald is both the traditional and modern May birthstone. Emerald would be the only other semi-precious stone, aside from Topaz which is listed in all the ancient birthstone tables. It is suggested to be the anniversary gift for a 20th or a 35th anniversary and also as an alternative stone for a 55th wedding anniversary.

Emeralds are green stones that have a hardness of around 7.5 to 8. Its name has been derived from the French word "esmeraude” as well as from the Greek word "smaragdos” that basically means “
green gemstone”. The emeralds that are of higher quality would have a deep grass green color with some kind of bluish cast. On the other hand, those stones of lesser quality have lighter shades of green. They could also have a slightly more yellowish tone.

These stones are mined in numerous countries but the major producers would be Brazil and Columbia, which has been recognized to be the source of the finest stones. They could also be found in Russia, Pakistan, Australia, India, South Africa, the United States and Norway.

As emeralds generally have numerous cracks, inclusions and fissures, most of these
stones have to be “oiled” or treated with oil. This would mean that they need to be immersed in oil, as this process would reduce the visibility of such imperfections and flaws. It could also improve the gemstone’s clarity.

You must also know that emeralds are relatively brittle stones and so, proper care must be done as they are worn and cleaned. They should also never be subjected to steam cleaning or dipped in an ultrasonic.

Emeralds have also been used as amulets that could ward off cases of epilepsy in the young. They have also been thought to cure diseases and other conditions of the eye. There are some claims that suggest these stones could enhance memory, clairvoyance and intelligence.