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Emerald Gemstone Jewelry

Emerald Jewelry Since the time of Cleopatra, emeralds have epitomized the of color in green gemstones. It would be easy to question this statement if all one had seen of emeralds were the commercial, (and poorer,) quality stones which abound on home shopping networks and in some jewelry stores. A fine emerald, though, is a truly breathtaking sight and is well deserving of its placement in the traditional "big four" along with sapphire, ruby and diamond. Emerald is the birthstone for May and for commemorating the 20th and 35th wedding anniversaries.

The center of world emerald mining is in South America with Colombia and Brazil as major producers. The African mines that supplied Cleopatra’s passion have long since been played out. However, today the African continent is second only to South America in production, with mines in Zambia, Zimbabwe, Madagascar and Nigeria.

Each of these world locales typically produces a certain color, size and clarity — so much so that the term "Colombian" emerald has often been enthusiastically used to describe vivid, slightly bluish green stones of medium to medium dark color, no matter what their actual geographic origin. Likewise, emeralds of lighter color are sometimes called "Brazilian", even if they were mined in Africa. The USA and Japan together purchase more than 75% of the world’s cut emeralds.

Emerald, by definition, is a medium or darker green to blue green beryl, in which the green color is derived from impurities of Chromium, Vanadium, or a combination of both. Before 1963 the definition was limited to Chromium containing stones, but the discovery of a large deposit of Vanadium colored stones in Brazil led to modification. VALUE CONSIDERATIONS

Like many stones, the per carat price of fine quality emerald escalates rapidly with size. For example, a recent price guide lists a fine quality, 3 carat Colombian stone as six times more valuable than three equivalent quality 1 carat stones.

Value factors hinge largely on color with nuances of saturation and hue affecting price to a significant degree. The most desirable color is a slightly bluish green in a medium dark tone with strong to vivid saturation. Clarity is important, but inclusions are tolerated more in this variety than virtually any other gem. Top quality, unenhanced stones, (with certification,) can bring as much as 50% more in price than treated stones of the same size, color and clarity. VALUE CONSIDERATIONS

Like many stones, the per carat price of fine quality emerald escalates rapidly with size. For example, a recent price guide lists a fine quality, 3 carat Colombian stone as six times more valuable than three equivalent quality 1 carat stones.

Value factors hinge largely on color with nuances of saturation and hue affecting price to a significant degree. The most desirable color is a slightly bluish green in a medium dark tone with strong to vivid saturation. Clarity is important, but inclusions are tolerated more in this variety than virtually any other gem. Top quality, unenhanced stones, (with certification,) can bring as much as 50% more in price than treated stones of the same size, color and clarity.

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