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The Lure of Emerald Green

By: Margaret MacMillan


Photography - Anthem in Art

Hair/MUA - Jenna Barrett

Model - McKenna Smith

Just saying the word emerald conjures visions of luxurious living. Images of glistening green stones gracing long slender fingers, encircling a neck, or flashing from ear lobes, perhaps on movie stars or royalty, instantly spring to mind. As do reels of actresses from Angelina Jolie to Zendaya walking red carpets draped in deep green satin. Even Ryan Gosling has been seen wearing emerald green to a movie premiere. 

What is the lure of this color, and why do we associate it with opulence? Of course, the most obvious reason is that it is the color of the emerald gem stone. Along with the diamond, blue sapphire, and red ruby, the green emerald is one of the four precious gem stones. These stones, also known as “the big four,” are considered precious because of their quality, rarity, and singularity of color. 

The most famous emerald is the 18.4-carat “Rockefeller Emerald.” In 2017, it was auctioned at Christies and purchased by Harry Winston for a mind-boggling $5,511,500. That’s $305,500 per carat. It is still the highest price per carat ever paid for an emerald and is now called the “Rockefeller-Winston Emerald.” With the likes of  John D. Rockefeller and Harry Winston coveting the gorgeous gem, and paying exorbitant prices for it, no wonder we equate the emerald  with affluence and are drawn to its unique hue. 

The emerald cut, not restricted only to emeralds, is also synonymous with taste and refinement. When a gemstone has an emerald cut, its shape is made to emphasize long parallel step cuts. Most are rectangular, but square versions, like the Rockefeller-Winston Emerald do exist, and are called square emerald cuts. 

Emeralds are a symbol of truth and love, which may add even more to their allure: The desire for love being one of a human being’s most potent wishes. The ancient Greeks and Romans believed it to be the gemstone of Venus, the goddess of love. As well, the emerald is a symbol of spring and rebirth due its color mirroring the verdant colors of that season. For that reason, it is also a symbol of hope. And, like many emblems of Ireland, often called The Emerald Isle due to its lush deep green landscapes, the emerald is a symbol of luck. Perhaps we don’t consciously think of these qualities when we gaze upon this beautiful stone, but their associations, nonetheless, are somewhere in the back of our minds lending pleasure to our relationship with it. 

Whether adding glamor to an evening dress, sparkle to a tiara, or drama to a stiletto,  emerald green catches our eye and puts us under its spell. When spotted in a room full of people or on a sun-drenched hill, its deep strong hue stops us in our tracks and commands our attention. A sign of luxury and a symbol of hope, love, and new beginnings, emerald green is a color that eclipses all others.

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