Tuesday, May 3, 2011

May Birthstone: Emerald

Emerald is the modern and traditional birthstone for the month of May.  The name Emerald is derived from the French 'esmeraude' and the Greek root 'smaragdos' which means 'green gemstone'.  Top quality emeralds are a deep grass green with a slightly bluish cast, but many lesser quality stones are lighter shades of green and can have a more yellowish tone.

The largest deposits of emeralds are found in Columbia & Brazil but Columbia is recognized as the source for the finest stones.  They are found in many other countries also, including Pakistan, Russia, Australia, South Africa, India, Norway, and the United States.

Because emeralds usually contain many cracks, fissures, and inclusions, most of these stones are 'oiled'.  This means that they are dipped in oil which reduces the visibility of the inclusions, and improves the clarity.  Emeralds are brittle stones and are very susceptible to breakage.  Care should be taken when wearing or cleaning them.  They should never be immersed in an ultrasonic or subjected to steam cleaning.

Emeralds were used as amulets to ward off epilepsy in children and thought to cure diseases of the eye. Folklore suggests that these stones will improve memory, intelligence, and enhance clairvoyance thus helping to predict future events. They are also worn to enhance love and contentment.  Some people believe that wearing an emerald brings wisdom, growth, and patience.

Spring is a time of new growth & rebirth and an emerald is as refreshing to the eyes as a spring garden after a rain.

No comments:

Post a Comment