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Birthstone Jewelry

May - Emerald & Chrysoprase

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Balance — Renewal — Growth

Through time, emerald has been known as a symbol of truth and love. In ancient Greece and Rome, emerald was said to be the gemstone of the goddess Venus, purveyor of love and hope. On the other side of the world, emeralds were revered by the Incas and believed by the Egyptians to be a source of eternal life. Emerald is also known as a stone of intuition, associated with sight and the revelation of future events and truths. It is also believed to have a soothing energy that generates freshness and vitality in the spirit of the wearer. A stone that embodies patience and compassion, the stone imbues the wearer with those same qualities while enhancing mental clarity and focus. Additionally, emerald represents balance, harmony, renewal, and growth. As the color of nature, emerald green embodies life, fertility, and abundance.

Emerald has a vibrant green color that creates beautifully focal jewelry. In fact, emeralds of the optimal shade and transparency can be even more valuable than a diamond. Emeralds, like all colored gemstones, are graded using four basic parameters — the four Cs: color, clarity, cut and carat weight. Normally, in the grading of colored gemstones, color is by far the most important criterion. However, in the grading of emeralds, clarity is considered a close second. A fine emerald must possess not only a pure verdant green hue as described below, but also a high degree of transparency to be considered a top gemstone. Emeralds tend to have numerous inclusions and surface-breaking fissures. Unlike diamonds, where the loupe standard is used to grade clarity, emeralds are graded by eye. Thus, if an emerald has no visible inclusions to the eye it is considered flawless. Stones that lack surface breaking fissures are extremely rare and therefore almost all emeralds are treated ("oiled") to enhance the apparent clarity. Imperfections are unique for each emerald and can be used to identify a particular stone. Eye-clean stones of a vivid primary green hue with no more than 15% of any secondary hue or combination (either blue or yellow) of a medium-dark tone, command the highest prices.

Care for Your Emerald Jewelry: Emeralds can be worn every day albeit with utmost care. If they are handled roughly or receive a sharp blow, they can chip and even break. It is also important to keep in mind that emeralds typically feature inclusions. The best way to clean emerald jewelry is with warm, soapy water, or a warm soapy cloth. Do not soak emeralds in soapy water and avoid harsh detergents that might dilute or remove any treatment from the stone. Never soak emeralds in solvents such as alcohol, acetone, or paint thinner.

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Happiness — Optimism — Healing

Chrysoprase is a powerful stone that brings good fortune and prosperity. It instills the wearer with poise, grace, courage for self-expression, and mental dexterity. It promotes love of truth, hope, empathy, forgiveness, growth, self-love, and general lust for life. It encourages fidelity in business and personal relationships, and known to improve emotional health. It stimulates creativity and draws out ones talents. Chrysoprase heals the inner child, releasing emotions locked in since childhood. It is also said to help relieve isolation and grief and aid in the opening and healing of deep emotional scars, sorrow, and suffering. Known for manifesting joy, Chrysoprase is one of the best mood stabilizers in the world of crystal healing. A cool and calming variety of Chalcedony, this gemstone was a favorite of Alenxander the Great, who called on its healing powers.

A variety of chalcedony, Chrysoprase is a cryptocrystalline quartz gemstone with transparency ranging from nearly opaque to nearly transparent. Chrysoprase is one of the birthstones for May and is referred to as the stone of Venus. It is the rarest and most valuable rich apple-green gemstone in the chalcedony family because of its stunning color and its rarity. It was often mistaken for emeralds by ancient jewelers and some finer specimens of chrysoprase can also sometimes be mistaken for imperial jade. Unlike emeralds, which owe their color to the presence of chromium, the bright spring green of chrysoprase is a result of trace amounts of nickel. It was used by the Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians to make seals, signets, jewelry, and other ornamental objects because of its vivid color. Poland had the most prominent chrysoprase mine before it was depleted in the 14th century. Today much of the world’s chrysoprase comes from western Australia, Germany, Russia, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, India, Kazakhstan, Madagascar, and Brazil.

Care for Your Chrysoprase Jewelry: Chrysoprase gemstone can be safely cleaned using warm soapy water and a soft cloth. It should be kept away from harsh household chemicals. Chrysoprase will fade if exposed to prolonged direct sunlight. Some faded color may be recovered through dark, moist storage. Gems with a hardness below 7 are susceptible to scratches from everyday wear as well as a very common hazard: household dust.

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