Emerald Stone - Meanings, Types, and Care Guide

Emerald stones

The Emerald name comes from the old French "Esmeralde", which comes from the Greek word "Smaragdos" which means "Green Stone". Emerald has green color unmatched in the history of gemstones. Therefore, this Stone is the most valuable stone from the Beryl group. Also, Emerald stones are among the most popular in the world and a favorite among the elite. It's considered one of the four most precious gemstones, besides Sapphire, Ruby, and Diamond.

There are several different types of emeralds, most of which are named for their country of origin. Brazillian Emeralds, Columbian Emeralds, for instance. There are also cat's eye emeralds gems which looks like a wide slit similar to the pupil in a cat's eye. Trapiche Emeralds from Muzo area of Columbia which contain black impurities that form a six-rayed star.

Emerald Origin

The principal Emerald deposits are currently mined in Colombia, Brazil, and Zambia. Colombia arguably produces the best Emeralds stones. Meanwhile, Brazilian Emeralds tend to be darker in tone and more heavily included. Brazilian Emeralds may have dark inclusions, while the light-colored inclusions typically present in Colombian Emeralds. Zambian Emeralds tend to have more of a bluish cast than either Colombian or Brazilian Emeralds. Also, Zambian Emerald stones tend has a slightly grayish color. 

Muzo is the most famous mining district in Colombia. It is located 60 miles north of Bogota. In addition to Muzo, Cosquez, and Pena Blanca are the major mines. Unlike diamonds, rubies, and sapphires, emeralds are not found along riverbanks. They are embedded in rocks, making their mining difficult. 

Brazil has Emerald mining in Bahia, Goias, and Minas Gerais. The stones are lighter than those from Colombia and most of them are yellow-green. Furthermore, Brazil also produces rare Cat’s Eye Emerald and Star Emerald (Emerald with a six-star pattern) which is really very rare.

The Emerald Mine in South Africa is concentrated to the north of the Transvaal. But only five percent of the rocks found in the Cobra and Somerset mines are of good quality. Most of the stones are light or muddy.

Zimbabwe also has several Emerald deposits; the most important is the Sandawana mine in the south. The crystal is small, but the quality is very good.

Russia has a deposit in the Urals, north of Sverdlovsk. Good quality emeralds are very rare, mostly light or muddy.

Other deposits also exist in Afghanistan, Australia (New South Wales and Western Australia), Ghana, India, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Tanzania, Zambia and United States (North Carolina).

How to Identify Emerald Stones

Emerald stone has the chemical formula Be3Al2 (SiO3) 6. Almost all natural emeralds have different inclusion characteristics. You can use light to expose and display inclusions and cracks which prove that the Emerald stone is natural. As mentioned above, Emerald's green color is the effect of Chromium and Vanadium, and the best color can be seen in direct sunlight. 

Emerald Inclusions

This stone has a glass-like sheen when cut and polished. Although the level of clarity between Opaque, Translucent (translucent but not transparent), and transparent. Unlike other Beryl gems, Emerald often has other inclusions and faults. But this inclusion is not seen as a negative attribute for Emerald, as applies to other types of gemstones. This fault is considered as part of the character of the stone and is used to guarantee buyers of the authenticity of natural emerald stones.

Unlike Diamond, the clarity of the Emerald stone is quite assessed by the eyes. Emerald will be considered as a perfect gemstone if does not have inclusions that can be seen directly with the eye, especially if that Emerald also has the ideal color.

Another easiest ways to identify the authenticity of green emeralds is to test the density and the level of hardness. Like all Beryl variant, Emerald is harder than Apatite, Quartz, and Feldspar. But a little softer than Spinel, Topaz, and Sapphire. However, Emerald is generally more fragile than other Beryls.

Oil treatments are most often used on emeralds, and the treatment is carried out directly from the mine site. This treatment will dramatically improve the appearance of Emerald. But sooner or later, oils will wear off (and out of) emeralds. In other words, the “improvement” isn’t permanent.

Synthetic or artificial emeralds have existed since 1848. In 1950, the synthesis method is commercialized and high-quality synthetic stones began to emerge since then. The term "Chatham Emeralds" is often used to name synthetic Emerald stones made by laboratories. Emerald Doublet is also widely available in the market. In many cases, the half-top part is natural Emerald stone then glued to glass or synthetic pavilions using emerald green paste. With Synthetic Emerald which placed below the natural Emerald, after being made jewelry, Emerald Doublet is often sold as natural Emerald.

There are several other green gemstones that are sometimes incorrectly recognized as Emerald, including Aventurine, Garnet, Tsavorite, Chrome Tourmaline, Diopside, Grossularite, Uvarovite, Verdelite, Fluorite, Hiddenite, and Peridot.

Emerald Powers

Emerald meaning and powers

In the book was entitled The Metaphysical Book of Gems and Crystals, Florence Megemont said that Emerald has a calming effect on the emotions, invigorating effect on thought, reflection, and philosophy. It is a marvelous crystal for activating artistic creativity, and for bringing focus and intensity to one’s life work.

Emerald is a remarkable support stone for the workplace. It increases mental acuity, strengthens memory and inspires eloquence in speech. Natural Emerald or Tumblestone held for five minutes a day brings rapid recall of facts. So Emerald is ideal for occupations where visionary insight is a significant benefit. Therefore, it enkindles success in business, especially for older women, and is particularly known for assistance in areas of legal affairs, trials, and litigation. (jewelsforme.com)

Emerald Chakra Healing and Balancing Energy

The Heart Chakra is located near the center of the breastbone. It regulates our interaction with the external world and controls what we embrace and what we resist, giving us the balancing ability to be ourselves within the environment. When the Heart Chakra is out of balance we may feel either controlling or controlled in a relationship, and become critical of the little foibles of others. We may find ourselves having inappropriately strong emotional responses to everyday external stimuli.

Green crystal energy is used to resolve blockages and to re-balance the Heart Chakra, helping us understand our own needs and emotions clearly.  We can deal with the ebbs and flows of emotional relationships, understand their cyclic nature, and accept the changes.

Emerald also stimulates the “high heart,” or transpersonal Love center just above and to the left of the Heart Chakra. It assists one in practicing compassion and respectful understanding of others.

Emerald Care Guide

Emerald stone is very sensitive to pressure and susceptible to household chemicals. Handling Emerald stone must be careful because it is more fragile than other Beryl. Although Emerald is one of the hardest gemstones with 7.5 to 8 Mohs scale.

Avoid wearing Emerald jewelry when working with chemicals or household cleaners, such as bleach or acidic ingredients. When cleaning, just use warm water and soap and soft tissue or cloth. Be sure to rinse the stone clean to remove all soap residue.

Furthermore, avoid using ultrasonic cleaners and steam cleaners (Steam Cleaner) when cleaning Emerald stones, because it can remove the oil used in Emerald treatment. If the oil disappears, the sheen and color of the Emerald stone will fade.

Always remove Emerald jewelry before exercising, or when doing other heavy activities. Emerald can easily scratch other gemstones, and vice versa, other gemstones that are harder can also scratch Emerald like Topaz and Sapphire. To avoid scratches, keep Emerald stones apart from other gemstones. Save by wrapping it in a soft cloth and placing it in a cloth-lined box to provide double protection.