April 21 – May 20
In many cultures, the emerald is a symbol of renewal and hope. It is strongly associated with Aphrodite’s Roman counterpart, the goddess of love, fertility and prosperity, Venus. Since it is a symbol of hope, therefore, it is quite fitting that the emerald should be a Spring birthstone.
It is said that the emerald has calming abilities. This may be due to its color. Green is known for its tendency to sooth. Perhaps it brings nature and fresh, young leaves to mind, which in turn provide a sense that all is well and in good order. Individuals whose birthstone is the emerald tend to have a calming disposition. They weigh options carefully before jumping into action or before speaking. They can be a calm presence at a time of crisis and many naturally turn to them for leadership.
The name emerald comes from the Greek smaragdos, which translates to green gem. The term later evolved through Latin, Old French and Middle english from Esmeraldus to Esmeraude and Emeraude. If you recognize the name of Quasimodo’s muse in Hugo’s Hunchback of Notre-Dame, you are absolutely right and the author surely named his character with great purpose.
In antiquity, emeralds were mined principally in India, Egypt and Austria. While Colombia is the largest producer of emeralds in modern times, deposits have been found throughout the world, including in the US, as close to us as North Carolina and Connecticut.
Trace amounts of vanadium and chromium are responsible for the color of this deeply beautiful gem. The emerald comes in different shades of green, some more yellow and some nearly blue. The color is significant, for an emerald of the ideal shade of green can have greater value than a diamond.
If we consider for a moment the association between this gem and a person’s ability to bring a calming presence in their midst, maybe this can serve as personal guiding imagery in challenging times. For example, by bringing to mind a true green emerald, one could determine whether present emotions are in balance (the right shade of green) and adjust their perspective and actions accordingly.
Read about other birthstones HERE