Birthstones are gems - precious and semi precious - that are associated with the birth month of an individual. These colorful stones are often associated with good fortune, and hold significant meaning for the wearer. The stone of the month for May is the gorgeously green gemstone: Emerald.
Where do Emeralds come from?
This brilliantly green coloured stone is a variety of the mineral beryl and it gets the regal colour due to trace amounts of chromium and sometimes vanadium. The historic origins of the stone can be traced back to regions of Egypt, India and Austria. However, currently Columbia happens to be the largest producer of emeralds, followed by Zambia. Apart from these two primary producers, they are also found pretty much all over the world.
The Significance of Emerald
Apart from being the birthstone for the month of May, Emerald is also the traditional stone for the zodiac sign of Cancer. There are many benefits associated with Emerald stone including therapeutic properties for individuals facing trouble with focus and confidence. As per Vedic astrology, Emerald represents the planet Mercury which in turn rules intellect. Hence, wearing an emerald is said to improve the intellectual power of the wearer. The powerful looking stone is also considered as a symbol of prosperity and worn to attract wealth & success.
Emerald is also known to lend benefits to physical health of the wearer. It is claimed that emeralds can have healing effects for major diseases related to heart, brain and kidney. They are also considered to be effective for respiratory problems and reducing stress levels during pregnancy and labor.
What’s an Emerald worth?
The most important factor in evaluation of emerald is the colour. The most desirable emerald is one with a bluish hue to it and a dark tone with vivid saturation. While inclusions are looked down upon in a lot of stones, such as diamonds, within emeralds they are quite easy to look past. Unenhanced stones with inclusions will most definitely be preferred over those that are treated. The average price range for 1 carat emerald can start from $30 for commercial grade and go upto over $9,000 for extra fine quality. With emeralds, size definitely matters - and the larger the natural emerald, the more rare and expensive it becomes.
Emerald as jewellery
The rich colour of this stone makes it a desirable stone to be added in jewellery design. Popularly combined with a silver base and diamonds, emerald also works well with gold, particularly in South Asian culture. The green colour is not only attractive on its own, but compliments a wide variety of other colours, making it a safe choice when it comes to selecting gemstones for special occasions.