Emerald engagement rings are on the fingers of women everywhere these days. The emerald is known by many names: emeraud in French, Smaragd in German and esmerelda, in Portuguese. In Sanscrit, it is known as “marakata,” which means “the green of growing things.”
History and Legend of the Emerald
Emeralds have been prized gemstones for many hundreds of years. There is evidence of its trade and barter in 4000 B.C. Babylon.
In Egypt, emerald mines gave the country a monopoly on this precious stone for hundreds of years. Although these gems were dug from the ground for more than 2,000 years prior to her birth, the mine outside of Cairo near the Red Sea is named for Cleopatra. In fact, it is still referred to as “Cleopatra’s Mine.”
The Egyptians believed that the stone represented rebirth and fertility. Cleopatra even had emeralds set in her crown and this stone has adorned the heads of many other rulers, as well. Emeralds were one of her favorite gems.
The Incas worshipped the stone. Numerous, exquisite artifacts have been discovered showcasing the Incan emeralds.
Cortes stole emeralds from the Aztecs. However, as he tried to make his escape and take his plunder back to Spain, his boat was shipwrecked. His booty and spoils became the prize of the ocean instead. It is said that one of the stolen emeralds was the size of a man’s hand.
Spain did, eventually, take over the world—in terms of emerald mining and production. After conquering the Muzo Indians in Columbia, they created breath-taking works of emerald art and dominated the emerald market for hundreds of years.
Aristotle praised its properties. He claimed the stone would enhance the wearer’s importance and standing, as well as protect the owner from catastrophe. He also wrote that the emerald, if worn around the neck, would prevent epilepsy. As a result, many noblemen of that time placed emeralds, encased in rings, around the necks of their children. As an example, Alexander the Great had an emerald set in his armor.
Nero, emperor of Ancient Rome, found the emerald to be soothing and calming. He looked through one of these precious stones too view the battles of the gladiators.
In the days of King Arthur, the emerald was believed to be the material used to fashion the Holy Grail.
In the Middle Ages, it was believed to guard a woman’s chastity.
In many cultures, it is still believed to bring considerable luck, health, and large fortune. It has also long been held to bestow predictive powers. Many believed the emerald would provide a remedy for spells and hexes.
The mines of Zambia, Columbia, and Brazil produce the bulk of the emeralds used commercially today. Brazil outdoes everyone else in quantity, but Columbia’s quality cannot be surpassed. The Muzo mines, which were battled over so furiously hundreds of years ago, remain significant sources of emeralds.
Emeralds are believed to provoke honesty and intelligence. The stone helps people speak more expressively and fluently. It is said to help people express their feelings, especially those of love.
Famous Hands Sport Emerald Engagement Rings
A woman wearing an emerald engagement ring is in excellent company. The incomparably elegant and sophisticated Grace Kelly wore a 12-carat emerald engagement ring from her beloved, Prince Rainier.
Richard Burton bestowed Elizabeth Taylor with a gorgeous emerald as an engagement present.
The mysterious and enigmatic Jackie Kennedy wore a nearly 3 carat emerald engagement ring from John F. Kennedy. Even the trend-setting Sharon Stone sported a 3.5 carat emerald engagement ring.
Why Choose Emeralds for an Engagement Ring?
Although most people think diamonds are the most precious stones, there are emeralds whose value surpasses that of diamonds. Additionally, diamonds do not hold near the mystique and charm of emeralds.
Sure, for many women, diamonds are a girl’s best friend. But emeralds herald individuality, distinctiveness, and originality. Plus, generally speaking, they are much more reasonably priced than diamonds.
The romance of emeralds has driven many grooms to select this precious stone for the treasured woman in his life. The emerald has long been a popular choice for expressions of betrothal and will continue to be for many more years.
Design of Emerald Engagement Rings
The most common picks for emerald engagement rings are either an emerald solitaire encircled by diamonds, or a diamond solitaire enclosed by emeralds. But in today’s climate of individuality, more and more signature emerald rings are adorning the hands of brides-to-be.
There is no precise definition for emerald color. Unlike diamonds, which are more plainly defined, an emerald’s color is more loosely detailed.
Emeralds are most valuable when they are blue-green in color. The signature “emerald green” hue is what truly drives up the price of an emerald. The color should be uniform throughout without yellow or brown spots in the stone. The stone should be absent cloudiness, as this makes its value substantially less. A medium to darker stone is preferable.
Emeralds have their own cut designed by jewelers. It is aptly named ‘the emerald cut.’ it is a square or rectangular cut, which creates angles and oblique corners that allow the emerald to dazzle. However, emeralds can be found in other shapes, as well.
Carat Weight or Size in Milimeters
Like diamonds, emeralds are measured. Their size is expressed in carat weight. The larger the carat weight, the larger, and heavier, the stone is in size. Once the stone rises to 2 or 3 carats, finding an emerald of fabulous color and clarity will be rare. Some jewelers will cite the emerald’s size in millimeters.
Treatment for Inclusions
Emeralds naturally have inclusions and breaks in the stone. Jewelers have long applied treatments. The purpose was to fill in the inclusion and breaks, obscuring the imperfections within them. Any treatments to the stone should be disclosed by the jeweler. In general, the more extensively the stone has been treated, the lower the quality.
Many emeralds are synthetic or lab created. These imitation stones can look just as beautiful as the real thing; however, their worth is substantially lower. Beware of “deals” on emeralds. The stone is likely synthetic.
Settings Influence Cost
The metal chosen to set the emerald will impact the cost of the emerald engagement ring. Sterling silver is typically the cheapest setting. Gold and white gold will cost more. Platinum is the most expensive material to use in an emerald engagement ring. However, it is also the most durable.
Pricing of Emeralds
Emeralds are priced based upon the stone’s clarity, size, and color.
A superb clarity emerald of roughly 5 to 6 milimeters, with side diamonds, will run a groom in the neighborhood of $3,000. (This is equivalent to .50 carat to .75 carat.) A diamond of comparable clarity and size can run in the neighborhood of $9,000. A lab-created emerald engagement ring of that same size and similar design would cost roughly $500.
A 7 milimeter, emerald-cut emerald engagement ring of high clarity with side stones set in 18k white gold will market for roughly $5,000. (This equates to roughly 1.25 carats.) A similar diamond engagement ring will set the groom back $20,000.
A 1.5 carat emerald ring with side diamonds set in white gold will market for about $6500. A 1.5 carat diamond ring with side baguettes set in white gold will cost somewhere in the market of $30,000.
A 3.5 carat emerald engagement ring of high quality set in platinum will cost more than $22,000. A 3.5 carat diamond of high-quality set in platinum will cost more than $50,000.
Where to Buy Emerald Engagement Rings
Emerald engagement rings can be purchased in brick and mortar stores or online. Many online jewelry stores offer free shipping, hassle-free returns and exchanges, and helpful support via chat, email, or phone. Customers can shop without concern for emerald engagement rings online.
How to Size Emerald Engagement Rings
Ring sizing is crucial on engagement rings. Some people consider it terrible luck when a groom-to-be slips the ring over a new fiancée’s finger and the ring does not fit. Indeed, many would-be fiancées take that as a bad omen.
If the emerald engagement ring is to be a complete surprise, sizing can be tricky. Find a sizing tool online. Plenty of online jewelers have them. The tools provide multiple means of ring sizing. One of the methods can be done without alerting the recipient of an impending engagement ring. Laying a ring the fiancee-to-be currently wears on the tool will reveal the lady’s ring size.
If the ring size cannot be ascertained prior to purchase, the ring can be sized afterward.
Brick and mortar stores offer free ring sizing by using metal rings sized in graduated dimensions. These are slipped onto the woman’s finger. It is done to divulge the proper ring size. Sometimes men will find crafty ways to get his intended to a jewelry store for ring sizing. Some enlist the help of loved ones to contrive a means of getting the lady’s ring size.
Care of Emerald Engagement Rings
Take care to avoid immersing the emerald engagement ring in water with detergents or soaps as this can damage the stone.
Emerald engagement rings are a statement of a timeless, enduring love. These precious stones proclaim the individuality and independence of women wearing them. Choose emerald engagement rings to as a testament of the strength and stamina of the relationship.