Emeralds - The Green Gemstones

By Owen Jones

The majority of women like jewellery, Many men do too, but they tend to prefer gadgets and watches. In numerous countries women store their wealth in jewellery as exemplified by the Fifties song "Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend". Asian women in particular collect gold.

However, precious stones and precious metals are generally perceived to be very valuable. Leaving the value of the piece aside, most people have a favourite colour.

Some like yellow gold, others prefer white. Some prefer the clarity and brilliance of diamonds, whereas others prefer aquamarine, turquoise of green.

In fact, high-quality green gems are among the most expensive of all gemstones including diamonds. Emeralds are the most costly green gemstones weight for weight.

Gemstones are created underground at immense pressures and they obtain their colours from the minerals involved in their composition. Gemstones are by and large quite hard, because they were fashioned under great pressure.

In olden times, many people believed that gemstones had magical properties. The magical property attributed to emerald was the restoration of vision and the curing of eye illnesses.

In fact, emeralds are a kind of beryl and derive their green colour from the element chromium or sometimes vanadium. Emeralds have a hardness of seven to eight; diamonds are the hardest at 10 on the Mohs Scale.

However, emerald has a great number of inclusions (or faults), so it will shatter fairly easily. These inclusions give emeralds their typical fuzzy look.Nevertheless, the best emeralds are those that have a clear, transparent, even colour of green all the way through.

Weight for weight, an emerald of the best quality is more valuable than a diamond of comparable quality, which amazes most people. However, decent diamonds are easier to find than decent emeralds and hence the disparity in price.

Become very suspicious of stones that are called 'something' emeralds like Lithia emeralds or oriental emeralds. These are usually cheaper gemstones which are referred to as emeralds in order to boost their value. These stones are not emeralds and not worth much in comparison.

Because of the value of real emeralds, many 'cheap emeralds' are either not emeralds at all or are very bad specimens that are being held together by resin. It is very difficult for a greenhorn to know the difference between the decent and the bad, which makes it important to buy from a trustworthy jeweller or dealer.

Emeralds have been well-liked since the days of the pharaohs and there are emerald mines in Egypt. There are also emerald mines in Siberia, Brazil, Zambia, Pakistan, South Africa, India and Australia amongst other countries.

In spite of the fact that there seems to be numerous sources of emeralds, good quality gemstones are still hard to get hold of at a decent price. However, there are no equivalents to emerald, so if you like the best, you can expect to pay a lot for it.

As with all costly gemstones, you ought to get a signed certificate of weight and quality when you purchase an emerald.

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