Exuding an intense green hue, emeralds have been admired since the ancient times. This fascinatingly beautiful gemstone is also regarded to be the birthstone for those born in the month of May. Here are some interesting facts about this stunning beauty.
1. The word emerald is derived from the Greek term ‘smaragdus,’ which means green gemstone.
2. The Incas and Aztecs of South America is said to have considered the emerald as a holy stone. It is believed that the oldest finds were made near the Red Sea in Egypt.
3. Cleopatra, Egypt’s female monarch was known for wearing emeralds. In ancient times, Egyptian mummies were often buried with this precious gemstone on their neck as a symbol of eternal youth.
4. The Vedas, the Holy Scripture of the Indians, talk about the healing properties of the emerald. Believed to bring in good luck, this gemstone was often found in the treasure chests of Indian kings and queens.
5. Most of the emeralds mined in the world come from Columbia, Brazil and Zambia. The best and most expensive emeralds are found in Columbia. Emeralds are also mined in Russia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, China, Cambodia, Australia, Egypt, India, Austria and the United States.
6. The largest and the most famous emerald is the Bahia Emerald. Approximately 840 lbs. and 1,900,000 carats, this stone is valued at over $400 million dollars.
7. The deeper the color of the emerald, the more valuable it is. The most beautiful emeralds have an intense bluish hue along with their bold green color.
8. Known to be the rarest of gems, the emerald is mostly found with fine inclusions. In spite of having inclusions, a deep green emerald has a higher value when compared to a flawless emerald in a paler color.
9. Emeralds are believed to balance energy and reduce emotional heaviness. It is said to bring in love, liveliness and empathy. Regarded as the gem of Venus, emeralds were also considered to aid in fertility.
10. The gemstone’s hardness protects it from scratches, while its brittleness makes cutting and setting difficult. Gem cutters have come up with a special cut just for this gem, which is the emerald cut. This cut brings out the beauty of the gemstone, while reducing the mechanical strain.