“An Emerald shines even if it’s worth is not spoken of” – Marcus Aurelius.

Diamonds may be a girl’s best friend but did you know, emeralds are the most historical gemstones of all time. Apart from diamonds, sapphires and rubies, emeralds are globally recognised as ‘precious’. The first ever-known emerald mines were in Egypt around 1500 BC. The locals there believed that emeralds stood for fertility and rebirth. For this reason, mummies too were buried with them to symbolise eternal youth.


Emeralds are made from beryl. They get their green colour from traces of chromium and vanadium. Though other precious stones are available in various colours, emeralds are only green. However, they are available in different hues such as bluish green, yellowish green and actual green. In terms of exclusiveness, they are even rarer than diamonds. Gemmologists recommend dipping it in baby oil to give them a sheen and bring back its lost lustre.

Since the home to ancient emeralds is believed to be near the Red Sea, the mines are usually referred to as Cleopatra Mines. Unlike diamonds, emeralds are flawed. That is because various elements come together through tectonic separation and the same process causes the gemstone to develop fractures as the tectonic plates move apart. You will never find a flawless emerald. Inclusions are natural in emeralds.

99% natural emeralds are flawed. If you find a stone without any, chances are they’re synthetic. Thus, when you’re buying emeralds, make sure you check the clarity, cut, colour and carat weight. These are 4Cs all gemstones are evaluated on. Categorising and analysing emeralds are something that requires skill. A certificate course in gemmology will help you delve deeper into the subject. You will understand how to grade and evaluate cut gems, about modern treatments and more.

Significance of Emeralds

According to classical Hindu literature, emeralds are referred to as Panna Rashi ratan. It is also popularly referred to by its Sanskrit name, Marakata. Emeralds in general signify a lot of things. For this reason, a lot of people wear this stone on their neck, wrist or finger.

The colour represents wealth, balance and renewal. It also stands for rebirth, fertility and abundance. This is the significance according to Vedic mythology and Hindu scriptures. Since it is a gem of good luck, it can also improve one’s well-being.  People born in the month of May are usually asked to wear emeralds.

Emerald Identification & Certification

Emeralds are super precious stones because of which they’re pretty expensive too. Owing to their high price point, there are several dupes and counterfeit stones available in the market. Thus, knowing how to identify emeralds is of utmost importance. We have listed four factors below that will help you differentiate between a real and fake emerald:

  • Clarity

Gemstones usually have some kind of irregularities and imperfections within their structure. If they look clear when you see them, that means they’re fake. When you see a gemstone up-close, it should have some kind of flaws like lines and bubbles. Artificially-created emeralds are usually made from glass. This is what makes them inexpensive too.

  • Colour

As mentioned earlier, emeralds are usually found in hues of green. They are dark green or bluish-green. Fake emeralds feature non-green undertones and can easily be distinguished from the real ones.

  • Facets

Genuine emeralds are hard. The edges should not display any signs of wear and tear. Over time, fake stones become less sharp. Real emeralds are always multifaceted and have different sides and angles.

Keep the above points in mind when you have to identify emeralds. Another crucial factor that helps you understand the quality of the emerald is the certification.

When you buy an emerald, the certification will determine whether it is real or genuine. Remember, emeralds are precious gemstones. When any kind of emerald jewellery is certified, you can confirm the origin and nature. A few grading laboratories according to which it has to be certified are GIA, AGL and AGS. The certification is given after assessing the 4 Cs that are clarity, cut, colour and carat weight.


A natural/genuine emerald is one of the greatest wonders of the world. If you want to add this rare gemstone to your collection, make sure you run it through the above parameters. Grading gemstones is an art and if you want to understand the gemmology curriculum in-depth, you can pursue a gemmology certificate programme from Vogue Institute of Art and Design.  

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