The emerald’s “hidden garden”
Emerald, together with ruby and sapphire, is an “evergreen” – in every way – in jewelry.
Particularly appreciated by people thanks to its vibrant green color, it generally hides from the eyes of careless beholder tiny inclusions that make it unique.
Under careful examination, with the support of a gemological loupe or a microscope, it’s possible to find into the gem endless structures more or less ordered which take the poetic name of “garden effect”. These inclusions, diagnostic for emerald, are generally made up of little tubes parallel each other and “veils” composed by small drops of liquids which ones are been trapped during the gem’s growth.
Another really important kind of emerald’s inclusion is called bi-phase and/or tri-phase, a cavity more or less wide that it might contain gases, fluids and sometimes solid particles, instantly recognizable thanks to its cubic form.
In the center and to the side, numerous three-phase phases containing gaseous bubbles (more or less rounded in shape) and cubic halite (or more commonly called salt) crystals.
Photo credits: Nathan Renfro / www.conceptjewelry.ca
These small imperfections are very useful to gemologists to identify where emeralds were born and growth and give to the gem an economic value. Among the most prestigious mining site we have Muzo (Colombia) followed by El Chivor; also Brazilian emeralds achieved considerable success, especially those were extracted in Bahia and Minas Gerais, two mining districts recognized throughout the world for the production not only of emeralds but also of other types of gems.
Emeralds are ancient gems, already known and traded by the Egyptians over 4000 years ago, appreciated by queens and princesses like Cleopatra, captured by the charm and inimitable color of these beautiful gems … and how can we blame her?