Emerald is one of the oldest and well known colored gemstones available. It has been mined, cut and worn by powerful rulers for centuries. Even the Egyptians had an Emerald mine that later became known as Cleopatra’s Mines.
The main source for Emerald has always been South America with the best quality gems coming from Columbia. In recent years, thanks to the mining efforts of Gemfields, the Emeralds from Zambia are increasing in popularity. Other major sources include Afghanistan and China.
Emerald is part of the Beryl family. The Beryl family is a large family that includes several different gems including Aquamarine, Morganite and Heliodore. This means that Emerald shares the same properties as Beryl. It has a hardness of 7.5 on the MOHS scale so it is a very hard gem. However, care must be taken with Emeralds as the can be brittle and easily fracture under mechanic shock such as being hot against a hard surface.
Our verified sellers have been dealing with Emeralds for many years and they are obliged to declare any treatments that have been applied to the stones. The most common treatment is the use of colorless oil. This oil enters any cracks or holes in the stone and make them disappear. This improves the clarity of the stone while also improving the color. It is safe to assume that all Emeralds have been treated using this method.
Be sure to check out the Emerald Pairs section as there are some beautifully matched pairs listed. Also the Specimens section has some amazing natural specimens in their host rock. If you fancy creating your own gem, check out the rough section for facet grade rough.