AZGem Gems
May, 2006

gem stone and jewelry newslettergem stone and jewelry newsletter


The World's Most Useful
Gem & Jewelry Monthly Newsletter

Written by Carolyn Doyle for customers of
The Dorado Company
and other visitors to the azgem.com website who subscribe.

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Usable Gems... and a little opinion.

 

May Birthstone Is Emerald

 

 

The May birthstone is emerald.

This month we continue our series on birthstones that will provide answers to questions like...

"What is my birthstone?"

"What if I don't like the color of my birthstone?"

"What if I can't afford my birthstone?"

Emerald is the green variety of beryl... if it contains chromium and/or vanadium, along with the normal chemical soup of beryllium, aluminum, silica, and oxygen.

Green beryl that does not contain one of these two elements is just that - green beryl.

Beryl as you already know, is a mineral family that includes:

  • aquamarine (blue)
  • morganite (pink)
  • bixbite (red)
  • heliodor (yellow)
  • goshenite (colorless)
  • golden beryl
  • green beryl

 

Click on the box... and have Google start putting money in your bank account!

 

Emerald almost always contains inclusions (those things in the stone in the top photo), and emerald is less durable than most other gems. But the color of emerald makes it one of the most popular, and most valuable gem stones in spite of these shortcomings.

Since emerald by definition is green in color, May babies have no color choice in their birthstone.

However, emeralds are available in a wide variety of prices, from cheap to shockingly expensive. As with all gems, price depends on size and quality.

Emeralds were mined in Egypt more than four thousand years ago, and were a favorite of Cleopatra.

For centuries, almost all transparent green gems were called emerald. So many ancient emeralds were actually green tourmaline, peridot, or other green gems.

Most emeralds are now mined in South America and Africa.

Columbia is generally recognized as the home of the best quality large emeralds, although Pakistan and Zambia produce many top quality gem emeralds.

Other countries that produce significant quantities of emerald include:

  • Brazil
  • India
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • United States
  • Zimbabwe
  • Nigeria
  • Tanzania
  • Madagascar

 

 

Columbia's emerald mines were taken over by the Spanish when they conquered much of South America in the sixteenth century. Emeralds, along with gold and other treasurers were shipped back to Spain during the colonial period. Have you heard of the Atocha emeralds?

Today, mining emeralds in Columbia is a dangerous business because of the cocaine drug lords in the area, but the miners seem to be able to keep these beautiful gems coming to market.

Emerald, the May birthstone is recognized worldwide as a beautiful and desirable gem with rich traditions and history.

Follow this link to learn more about Birthstones, Modern and Traditional.

A Google search for the keyword phrase emerald jewelry  returns a number of listings and ads for vendors specializing in production run jewelry pieces.

 

Google

 

 

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Gem Industry News...

 

Emerald Magnate Attacked

Unknown assailants shot the emerald kingpin Yesid Nieto in late February. 

Nieto survived the attack at his Bogota apartment, and he is said to be making good progress towards recovery.

Nieto is one of several major mine owners in the remote, emerald-rich region of Boyaca, Colombia. He rose to prominence through his astute management of the successful La Pita emerald mines, of which he is part-owner.

Nieto has also been credited with ushering in a new era of openness in the notoriously secretive emerald business, and for restoring confidence in Colombian emeralds among global buyers.

Nieto is a prominent spokesman for seven powerful clans that control 80% of Colombia's emerald exports. Industry observers suggest the shooting could destabilize power and control of the region among rival clans. In the 1990s, a war between emerald mining clans claimed the lives of thousands in the region.

Nieto had recently offered to help Colombian government authorities eradicate several coca plantations in the region, therefore some officials speculate that cocaine producers made the attempt on Nieto's life.

 

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Jewelry Dealers

Mother's Day is right around the corner... plus, anniversaries and birthdays are always coming up.

All are good reasons for your customers and their friends to buy jewelry.

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Are you rewarding your customers with discounts or freebies when they send you a new customer? 

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The price of gold recently passed $650 per ounce, so if you weren't able to hedge by buying up gold mountings and findings a couple of years ago, you probably should be buying what you need now. It just keeps going up.

 

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Jewelry Dealers Program

Do you enjoy jewelry and gems?jewelry newsletter

Do you enjoy talking with friends and co-workers?

Take a look at our great Jewelry Dealers Program.

 

Carolyn Doyle

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The Dorado Company
P.O. Box 8232
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