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Article: The emeralds in the old jewelry


The emeralds in the old jewelry

Emeralds, with their deep green colour and unmatched brightness, have fascinated humanity for centuries. In the world of ancient jewelry, these beautiful gems have occupied a prominent place, being appreciated for their unique beauty and rich history.

From ancient civilizations to European royalty, emeralds have been symbols of status, power and elegance. That's why we want to take a tour of the history of the emeralds in jewelry until what we know today.

Ancient History

  • Egypt: Pharaoh treasures In ancient Egypt, emeralds were considered gems of great value and were associated with fertility, regeneration, and eternity. It is believed that some of the first emerald mines were in the eastern desert of Egypt, in the region known as the Uadi Sikait. Egyptian pharaohs, such as Cleopatra, were known for their love of emeralds and included them in their jewelry, both for personal use and in amulets and funeral objects. Emeralds have been found in many ancient Egyptian tombs, demonstrating their status as symbols of power and status in Egyptian society.
  • Rome: Gems of Antiquity In ancient Rome, emeralds were also highly valued and considered one of the most precious gems along with diamond, ruby and sapphire. The Romans imported emeralds from Egypt, as well as from other regions such as Persia and India. Emeralds were appreciated for their intense green colour, which was associated with nature and fertility. The Romans used them in a variety of jewelry, including rings, brooches and earrings, and considered them good luck amulets and protection from disease and poison.
  • Greece: Jewels of the Gods In ancient Greece, emeralds were known as themaragbits and were venerated for their beauty and rarity. The emeralds are believed to have been discovered for the first time on Zabargad Island in the Red Sea, where Greeks set up mines to extract these precious gems. The ancient Greeks associated the emeralds with the goddess of love, Venus, and believed they had mystical and healing powers. The emeralds were worn by the Greek aristocracy in a variety of jewels, such as diadems, necklaces and bracelets, and were considered symbols of beauty and status.

Symbolism and Meaning: More Than a Gem

In addition to their physical beauty, emeralds have been loaded with symbolic significance throughout history. In many cultures, emeralds are believed to have properties that go beyond the material. They are said to promote emotional balance, harmony and abundance, and have the power to foster love and loyalty. In the Middle Ages, emeralds were thought to have the power to prevent infidelity and keep their bearer safe from danger.

The Age of the Royalty: Emeralds in the Royal Jewelry

During the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, emeralds reached their maximum splendour in the royal jewelry store. European monarchs, including kings and queens from Spain, France, England and other countries, greatly valued the emeralds for their exceptional beauty and rarity. These precious gems were considered symbols of status, power and prestige, and were appreciated for both their material value and their symbolic meaning.

  • Emeralds in Crowns and Royalties One of the most outstanding forms in which emeralds were used in the era of royalty was in the crowns and tiaras of the monarchs. The emeralds were embedded in these pieces of jewelry to enhance their beauty and highlight the real status of those who carried them. For example, the Imperial Crown of the Holy Roman Empire, dating back to the 10th century, has emeralds among its precious stones. Similarly, the tiaras of European royalty, such as the Tiara of Queen Mary of Teck, also presented emeralds as part of their design.
  • Collars and Jewelry of the Court In addition to the crowns and tiaras, the emeralds were also used in necklaces, brooches, earrings and other ornaments worn by royalty and nobility. These pieces of jewelry were made with large emeralds and quality, often surrounded by diamonds or other precious stones to highlight their beauty. Famous examples include the Queen Victoria's Emerald Necklace and Emerald Necklace of Empress Eugenia, both adorned with impressive emeralds.
  • Emeralds in Culture and Politics In addition to their use in the royal jewelry, emeralds also played an important role in the culture and politics of the time. Emeralds were said to have mystical and protective properties, and they were given the power to bring good luck and protection to their carriers. In addition, emeralds were often diplomatic gifts between monarchs and rulers, used to strengthen alliances and seal treaties.

Beauty Perduram: Emeralds in Modern Jewelry

Although the era of royalty came to an end, the charm of emeralds endures in modern jewelry. Today, emeralds remain a popular choice for those looking for high-quality pieces and timeless elegance. From engagement rings to necklaces, the emeralds add a touch of sophistication and glamour to any set.

Paula A. Bonilla 

Social communicator and journalist from Sergio Arboleda University in Colombia. She is also a jeweler and is passionate about constantly learning about precious gems and national high jewelry.

Currently, she is working for one of Bogotá's most important jewelry stores, Emerald by Love. This jewelry store has over 40 years of experience and has 2 physical branches in the capital city of Colombia, located in the city center.

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