One of the four most precious gemstones is the Emerald. Here is some basic information about this elegant green stone that is popular with many jewelers.
Almost all-natural emeralds contain distinct characteristic inclusions and almost all are treated with oil or resin to fill tiny fissures and cracks. It is the presence of these flaws and oil which also makes it quite easy to identify and distinguish natural emeralds amongst other similar gemstones. Artificial light will also expose and amplify inclusions and fractures that prove the stone to be a natural emerald. Emerald color is owed to trace amounts of chromium and vanadium, and color is best admired under natural daylight. One of the easiest methods to identify green emeralds is to test for specific gravity (density) and hardness. Like all forms of beryl, emerald is harder than apatite, quartz, and feldspar, but is also slightly softer than spinel, topaz, and sapphire. However, emerald is generally more fragile than other beryl, owing to its naturally included state.
Emeralds are most often cut in a special cut designed just for this gem; “the emerald-cut”. The emerald cut is a step-cut or trap-cut featuring a rectangular or square shape with truncated corners. This cutting style also maximizes the beauty and color of the stone, whilst protecting it from mechanical strain and internal stress. Emeralds are also cut into a variety of other traditional shapes such as pear, oval and round. Lower grade materials are often cut in cabochon or into beads. Highly transparent and clear materials are sometimes cut in brilliant-style.
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