Ahh… Emeralds. Emerald gems have fascinated mankind since they were discovered. The word Emerald is derived from the Greek word “Smaragdos” meaning “green stone”. These magnificent stones are a composition of the mineral Beryl, which is the same family as aquamarine (one of March’s birthstones), heliodor, and morganite. Beryl, or beryllium aluminum silicate (in chemical terms), is a six-sided symmetrical crystal. Beryl contains beryllium, aluminum, silicon, and oxygen.
The May Birthstone
Emerald gemstones are also the May birthstone, that is, people who are born in the month of May can wear an emerald with special enthusiasm! The emerald is truly a feminine spirit, that is full of motherly qualities. It is said that those born under the month of May usually have behavioral characteristics of loyalty and faithfulness. There are metaphysical properties of improved memory and enhanced mental ability for wearers of the Emerald. Babies born in May are said to be very wise.
There are many stories and qualities throughout history that are linked to the fabled emerald stone. A few of them are given below.
- Royal blood. Many royal people are said to have worn the emerald stone in the form of a ring or as a decoration in their crowns. The most famous royal personality who swore by emeralds was Cleopatra. Since then, several ancient mines of emerald gemstones near the Red Sea were called Cleopatra’s mines. She would wear emeralds all the time and would even gift visitors to her court with emeralds which had her likeness carved onto them.
- Eyesight & intellect. Emerald gemstones are also said to give its wearer the gift of good eyesight and intellect. Some also say that emerald gems can be used to treat poison. It can also be used as a treatment for dysentery as it has laxative properties.
- Emeralds for the soul. Due to its green color, an emerald stone is quite pleasant to look at and provides relief to those who spend their time with a lot of precision work that may be taxing on the eyes. Perhaps that is one of the reasons why several artisans and craftsmen keep an emerald close by while they are working and stare at it to soothe their eyes.
- Cure ailments. Emerald stones are also said to cure headaches, soothe fears and irritations, and prevent attacks of epilepsy. Just place the emerald stone on the forehead for a few minutes and see the effect.
- Circulation. Emeralds have also been known to regulate blood circulation and reduce time in labor and pain.
Emerald gems were part of many famous treasures all across world history. They were considered to be a sign of wealth by many. Traditionally associated with the attributes of fertility, love and rebirth, the Emerald was dedicated by the Ancient Romans to Venus, the goddess of love and beauty. Today, the emerald meaning represents wisdom, growth and patience. By weight, the emerald is the most valuable gemstone today.
Nowadays, most emerald gems go through a process called oiling. In this procedure, the emerald gems are immersed in oil to preserve their clarity. However, due to its basic mineral composition, emerald gemstones over one carat are rarely very clear. Therefore, if you do find a stone that is over one carat and extremely clear, beware! It just might be a fake. Among all the gems to be copied and faked, the emerald is at the top of the list. Therefore it makes sense to buy an emerald from a genuine jeweler like Gittelson Jewelers.
Emeralds As Gifts
Obviously, the perfect gift for those born in May, Emerald earrings are a great choice for May babies. Due to Emerald’s apparent nurturing qualities, a pair of Emerald earrings or an emerald necklace would be an unexpected gift to any mother, most especially expectant ones. she may even like an emerald ring, to protect her and keep her strong-minded. Emerald may also be a wise gift for college students, who are seeking knowledge and often need clarity. Perhaps this yellow gold emerald ring.
In the Middle Ages, emeralds were believed to hold the power to foretell the future. Christians for centuries saw it as a symbol to the resurrection of Christ, and to the ancient Romans… the emerald symbolized the reproductive forces of nature. Today, we can appreciate the mysticism of the May birthstone, veiled in allegory and illustrated through historical symbolism. But to wear it and to bestow it; that is something.
Browse May Birthstone Jewelry and other fine jewelry at Gittelson Jewelers “Diamonds in the Skyway” in downtown Minneapolis. We have something for every occasion and style. You will be sure to find something that she (and you) will treasure for generations.
Check out our birthstone jewelry guide, for more information.