Greener than rolling hills in Ireland, the striking Emerald is the birthstone of the month of May.
The name Emerald as used today is believed to come from an ancient Persian word that translated to Greek as Smaragdus, meaning “green stone,” which also appears in the Afrikaans name for Emerald, namely “Smarag”. Throughout time the old french and latin versions, Esmeraulde or Esmaraldus grew into the current name, Emerald.
Natural, transparent Emerald is one of the four precious gemstones or Strategems, also including Diamond, Ruby and Sapphire. You will find emerald in hues ranging from yellow-green to blue-green, with the most sought after being the medium to dark, grassy green hue. The correct colour and quality Emeralds can reach prices much higher than diamonds.
Known as the sacred stone of Venus, and also called the “Stone of Successful Love”, the Emerald has long been a symbol of hope, love, renewal and growth, with the delicious deep green signifying vitality and youth.
One of our favourite tales of how the Emerald came to be is a story from Forbes’ Oriental Memoirs, that he wrote on his return to England after extensive travel around Europe.He tells of a man in an Indian garden watching a swarm of fireflies flitting about in the moonlight one night. After hovering for quite some time, one particular little firefly, brighter and even more brilliant than the others, settled on the grass and stayed there. The man, surprised by the firefly remaining still for so long, approached to investigate. There in the grass, instead of the Firefly, he found a brilliant green gemstone. A shining Emerald which he took for himself and wore in a ring from that day on.