THE EMERALD, The Aztec Lightstone
Stone of light among the Aztecs, the exploitation of the emerald has developed around the world and in many civilizations. The extractions identified as being the oldest are located in Egypt. Known as the “Cleopatra Mines” (the Queen of Egypt was particularly fond of precious stones with green shards), they date from 1,300 BCE. We also know that the emerald was used as a currency in Babylon in the second century BC.
Today, the main deposits are found in Brazil, China, Colombia and Zambia, but they are also found in Russia, Mexico and Australia. In its natural state, this gem is rarer than diamonds. Certain deposits, such as those from Colombia, are indeed exhausted. A rarity that gives the stone a powerful commercial value, much higher than that of gold. This beautiful gem known for its green color has the specificity of being “dichroic”: depending on the angle of view, its shades of color change from green to yellow or from green to blue.
Due to their generally tiny size, the largest emeralds can today be worth twenty times that of diamonds. The price of a single carat of particularly precious emerald is nowadays between 2,500 and 3,500 euros. Of course, such prices depend on the quality of the stone which can be very variable and it is possible to find emeralds at just a few tens of euros. The more opaque the stone, the less valuable it will be. The emerald is traditionally offered for the 20th and 40th wedding anniversary.
THE SAPPHIRE, The most beautiful thing
Today, blue sapphire deposits are found mainly in Burma, Brazil, Madagascar, Sri Lanka and Thailand, but the most popular stones come from Kashmir. Symbol of wisdom, the sapphire is the flagship gift of the 5th and 16th wedding anniversary, but is also the most popular gemstone for engagement rings. Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton are not for nothing. On the setting side, the sapphire is worn on all types of jewelry and invariably goes with yellow gold, white gold and pink gold.
THE RUBY, The king of precious stones
These gems generally undergo treatments to perfect their appearance. Thanks to heat treatments and ever more modern techniques, their imperfections are eliminated for a radiance and transparency clearly improved. The color of the ruby can vary from pale pink to deep red, passing by bright red. This last shade known as “pigeon blood” is the most sought after. Ruby forms 25-50 kilometers deep. Rubies are generally cut in oval and do not exceed 10 carats. If the Kingdom of Myanmar (Burma) is known worldwide for its ruby mines (90% of Asian production), deposits are also found in Cambodia, India, Sri Lanka (oldest mines and dating from the 8th century before our era), in Thailand or in East Africa.
With a score of 9 on the Mohs scale, ruby is, along with diamond, the hardest stone. In addition to jewelry, rubies are used in watchmaking mechanisms to limit friction between the different cogs. Renowned for banishing anger and balancing passions, ruby is the stone of the month for July. It is traditional to offer a ruby for the 15th and 35th wedding anniversary, but this precious stone can perfectly be offered for any occasion
(engagement, anniversary …).