May Birthstone – The Elegant Emerald

When you think of the month of May, what do you think of? Lush green fields? Armfuls of blossoming flowers? May is getting toward the end of spring when the sun is shining bright, the flowers are blooming and the earth is at its most colourful. It's only appropriate that the birthstone to represent this month be just as radiant and full of life.

A significant representation of hope and love, the emerald birthstone embodies renewal, growth, unity, and compassion. With so many amazing qualities, it's no wonder the May birthstone represents so many powerful attributes.


What Birthstone is May?

The May birthstone is the rich, verdant green emerald. The emerald birthstone is a symbol of hope and renewal. Interestingly, the emerald is the only stone with a cut or shaped named after it. For many years, people believed that the May birthstone gave insight into future events and revealed truths. Ancient folklore suggests that putting an emerald under your tongue allows you to see into the future. The emerald birthstones is also said to enhance brain power, memory, communication skills, and speech, making them excellent gifts for students or for those in the workplace.


History of the Emerald Birthstone

The emerald gemstone has been around longer than humans have. The oldest known emeralds are roughly 2.9 billion years old, and the first known emeralds were mined in Egypt.

Modern history suggests that the emerald birthstone was the first gemstone traded in markets in Babylon around 4000 BC, giving the May birthstone an even richer history. We can see evidence of this trade in the origins of the modern name for the May birthstone. The emerald name originated from the Greek word "smaragdos," which means "green stone".

The May birthstone flourished in ancient Egypt. Contemporaries of the time considered the emerald birthstone a symbol of eternal life. Even the infamously beautiful and cunning Queen Cleopatra favored this radiant gem.

Even today, the May birthstone endures as a favorite among royalty and the emerald birthstone continues to adorn countless crowns and other royal treasures. Most recently, upon her marriage in October 2018, Princess Eugenie donned the Greville Kokoshnik tiara. Crafted by Boucheron in 1919, this stunning platinum tiara features a 93.7 carat oval-shaped emerald centre stone. Smaller octagonal emeralds and hundreds of brilliant rose-cut diamonds flank the centre stone in an intricate kokoshnik style, hence the name. This breathtaking tiara was given to Queen Elizabeth in 1942 by Dame Margaret Greville.


The Brilliant Colour of May Birthstones

The emerald birthstone is a popular gift choice for many reasons, including its overall value, hardness, and eye-catching hue.

As one of the four recognized precious gemstones, the May birthstone vivid green colour is one of the most desirable.

Just like diamonds, experts use the four Cs to determine an emerald's value. However, the May birthstone’s colour is usually the most important of these factors.

The most desirable emerald birthstone colours are bluish-green to pure green hues. Additionally, the most sought-after emerald birthstones are highly-transparent. Where does this luxurious colour come from? Emerald is made from beryl. The rich green colours and the spectrum of emerald hues come from trace amounts of chromium and/or vanadium in the mineral mixture.


Care of Your May Birthstone

The emerald birthstone is around an eight on the Mohs scale of hardness, so it is can be scratched or damaged, but oly by stones that are harder, like sapphire, ruby or diamond. Additionally, since most natural emeralds contain inclusions, or blemishes that are fracture-filled with oils or waxes they do require some special care .

This is because of these treatments that emeralds should avoid exposure to heat, harsh chemicals and sudden changes in air pressure. It goes without saying that you should never put your emerald in an ultrasonic cleaner. The vibrations and heat from the cleaner can cause the stone to crack or even break apart.

Care for your emerald jewellery by cleaning with mild soap and warm water and drying with a soft cloth.


Shop for Emerald Jewellery at Peoples

Whether worn with a red-carpet gown or a favorite pair of weekend jeans, the May birthstone is truly a sight to behold. This gorgeous green gemstone is a favorite with celebrities and fashion influencers. Plus, it adds an air of elegance and beauty to any look.

When it comes to celebrating a May birthday, an emerald jewellery design is always appropriate. You can always count on Peoples Jewellers to have a great selection of emerald gemstone jewellery and emerald birthstone jewellery.

Visit your local Peoples Jewellers retail store to shop emerald jewellery or browse our website to find a beautiful array of emerald gemstone jewellery online. You can count on Peoples for both traditional and contemporary styles of emerald jewellery that celebrates life, love and of course, a May birthday.