Emeralds, along with diamonds, rubies, and sapphires, are the most highly prized and precious of all gemstones. Emeralds have been highly prized since at least the time of the ancient Egyptians, who were the first to mine this gemstone.
The Mogul Emerald is one of the largest and most beautiful emeralds in the world. The rectangular tablet, which dates from the late 17th century, weighs 217.80 carats and is about 10 cm high! One side is inscribed with Islamic prayers and the other is engraved with opulent flower ornaments.
Colombia is the leading producer of gemstone quality emeralds; however, this gemstone is also mined in Zambia, Brazil, Zimbabwe, Madagascar, Pakistan, India, Russia, and the United States (North Carolina).
Beryl is a beryllium aluminum cyclosilicate mineral that comes in several gemstone quality varieties, one of which is the gorgeous green emerald (other varieties of beryl include aquamarine, heliodor, and morganite). Emerald gets its vibrant green color from trace amounts of chromium, and its name from the Sanskrit word meaning “green”.
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