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Emerald Question

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LD

Ideal_Rock
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How can you tell the difference between a Colombian and a Siberian Emerald? My understanding is that a good Siberian can rival the best Colombians. Is there a definitive way to tell the difference? Can lab testing help?

The reason I''m asking is that I have the most wonderful 1.5ct Emerald, inherited through the family. It''s virtually inclusion free and was assessed/valued by an independent trustworthy valuer as being the real deal (before I get question of "is it synthetic" etc
). However, it was assumed that it was Colombian BUT I have a very very very vague memory of my Mother mentioning Siberian. I may well be remembering incorrectly but .............

Any help, pointers would be appreciated!
 

m76steve

Brilliant_Rock
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there are inclusions expecially in columbian material that form in unique ways-a good appr. will be able to identify the presence or lack of these special id''s-your stone could be from brazil or africa but it takes a prof. that knows keys, what to look for...
 

LD

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Date: 3/24/2009 5:34:44 PM
Author: m76steve
there are inclusions expecially in columbian material that form in unique ways-a good appr. will be able to identify the presence or lack of these special id's-your stone could be from brazil or africa but it takes a prof. that knows keys, what to look for...
It already has been appraised by an expert but with the exception of one tiny inclusion it's almost flawless. It's not an African stone.
 

m76steve

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another possibility is that it could be chrome diopside also known as russian emerald-most of these stones are very clean and average @2cts in size. they are also on the soft side-5-6 on the hardness scale...
 

LD

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Steve, with the greatest of respects - this ring is an Emerald. It has been appraised as such.
 

LD

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Photos - This is a good indicator of the colour - perhaps it looks slightly darker in this photo than in real life. The little spots you can see are water spots - I had just cleaned the ring and it was still slightly wet!
 

m76steve

Brilliant_Rock
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if your appraiser is good they can id the colombian without question-im responding to ur ? about id ing columbian-am sure ur stone is quite nice-post a pic & show it off-i have a good amount of emerald & show them all the time-my 2cents-enjoy...
 

LD

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Under very bright light. You can see the inclusions at the top of the gemstone. The Emerald itself is darker than it looks in this photo.
 

m76steve

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this is a pendent 10+cts of columbian emerald-the stones are pretty clean and all show the unique inclusions only found in columbian-am glad to know other people who appreciate the colored stones-will keep in touch...

m002a.JPG
 

T L

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Date: 3/24/2009 5:28:33 PM
Author:LovingDiamonds
How can you tell the difference between a Colombian and a Siberian Emerald? My understanding is that a good Siberian can rival the best Colombians. Is there a definitive way to tell the difference? Can lab testing help?

The reason I''m asking is that I have the most wonderful 1.5ct Emerald, inherited through the family. It''s virtually inclusion free and was assessed/valued by an independent trustworthy valuer as being the real deal (before I get question of ''is it synthetic'' etc
). However, it was assumed that it was Colombian BUT I have a very very very vague memory of my Mother mentioning Siberian. I may well be remembering incorrectly but .............

Any help, pointers would be appreciated!
How old is the stone in your family? I know it''s virtually impossible to tell from a picture where the stone''s origin is, but it looks Zambian. They have a darker green coloration and tend to be cleaner than Columbian material. However, that doesn''t mean it''s not Siberian or Columbian. I have never seen a Siberian emerald, are they from the Urals?
 

LD

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Date: 3/24/2009 7:14:37 PM
Author: tourmaline_lover


Date: 3/24/2009 5:28:33 PM
Author:LovingDiamonds
How can you tell the difference between a Colombian and a Siberian Emerald? My understanding is that a good Siberian can rival the best Colombians. Is there a definitive way to tell the difference? Can lab testing help?

The reason I'm asking is that I have the most wonderful 1.5ct Emerald, inherited through the family. It's virtually inclusion free and was assessed/valued by an independent trustworthy valuer as being the real deal (before I get question of 'is it synthetic' etc
). However, it was assumed that it was Colombian BUT I have a very very very vague memory of my Mother mentioning Siberian. I may well be remembering incorrectly but .............

Any help, pointers would be appreciated!
How old is the stone in your family? I know it's virtually impossible to tell from a picture where the stone's origin is, but it looks Zambian. They have a darker green coloration and tend to be cleaner than Columbian material. However, that doesn't mean it's not Siberian or Columbian. I have never seen a Siberian emerald, are they from the Urals?
Hi TL!


I would think it's early 20th century. It was my grandmothers (and my mother was born in 1925) so I'm guessing somewhere around there. I need to look at the diamonds more closely to see if they give an indication of period. I'll do that tomorrow when (if) we get light!!!

I know it's definitely not Zambian and the appraiser was fairly certain that the colour was very very reminiscent of a good Colombian. She's experienced in coloured gemstones and I trust her judgement implicitly. However, as I said, I've just got a niggling memory that my Mum mentioned Siberia (and yes, you're correct, I believe they came from the Urals). The only reference I've found online is that Siberia did produce some very nice examples (and were difficult to tell apart from the Colombians) but that's as far as I've got.

Here's a link to what I've found http://www.realgems.org/list_of_gemstones/emerald_info.html Interestingly, and completely off topic, I've got a lovely little trapiche emerald very similar to the one in this link!!!
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Well it is a very blue green reminiscent of fine (albeit super rare) Columbian material as well. I think the only way to be sure is to send it to the AGTA for an origin report. In any case, no matter where it comes from, the important thing is that it''s a fine color, and it''s clean and since it''s old, hopefully untreated. It''s really amazing that you have not only amassed this incredible gemstone collection yourself, but you have also inherited this beauty. I''m so jealous!
 

LD

Ideal_Rock
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Awwww bless you TL. To be honest it was this ring (that I used to play with as a child) that started my fascination with gemstones - so you''re actually looking at the ring that started an obsession!!!!

This is perhaps THE ring that if I were to lose it would cause the most heartache of all my collection. It has so much sentimentality attached I can''t tell you. My Mum wore this and a diamond trilogy ring nearly every day of her life. How it''s survived intact I''ll never know! Mind you she also told me of the dangers of hot water with Emeralds etc., so she really looked after her jewellery.
 

coatimundi_org

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I agree with TL's above post, and I am most certainly jealous as well!

Beautiful ring--beautiful stone LD!

(the old diamonds are lovely!)
 

LD

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Thank you also Coati. I'm so pleased that others appreciate it's beauty as well. Any idea on the age of the diamonds Coati? I know it's not a face on photo and I'll try and get one tomorrow.

I'm afraid sending it to AGTA isn't an option. Can you imagine the stress of sending this from the UK through the post???? No way! I just couldn't do it! I'm wondering if the Birmingham Assay Office here in the UK has the ability to assess origin? I could drive there and hand it over - and wait nervously until they give it back!!!!
 

Lady_Disdain

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What a beautiful ring! And a family heirloom as well.

I love the square prongs on the stone corners.
 

T L

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Date: 3/24/2009 7:57:14 PM
Author: LovingDiamonds
Thank you also Coati. I''m so pleased that others appreciate it''s beauty as well. Any idea on the age of the diamonds Coati? I know it''s not a face on photo and I''ll try and get one tomorrow.

I''m afraid sending it to AGTA isn''t an option. Can you imagine the stress of sending this from the UK through the post???? No way! I just couldn''t do it! I''m wondering if the Birmingham Assay Office here in the UK has the ability to assess origin? I could drive there and hand it over - and wait nervously until they give it back!!!!
Honestly LD, I wouldn''t waste the time of getting an origin report unless it has some sentimental meaning for you to know. The thing I would be concerned about getting is a report on the treatment or lack thereof. That will greatly increase it''s value because you already have the fine color and clarity. A clean, deep colored, chromium rich emerald that is untreated is very rare and special, although I know the ring is priceless to you.
 

LD

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Lady Disdain - thank you too.

TL - you''ve got a point. I guess I''m just curious! You may be right about the treatment/lack of. I''ve just looked at the hallmarks and compared to those online and it appears (if I''m reading it correctly) that with the shape of the box and the lettering, there are two date stamps that suggest 1856 and 1859 - earlier than I thought. I''m going to spend more time looking tomorrow though.

I''ve just taken a quick photo of one of the side diamonds (it''s half past midnight here so I''m heading off to bed) but is this an Old Mine Cut?
 

LD

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Here are the hallmarks ......

These read (I think) ?M ATZ H K Plat
 

T L

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Wow if the emerald is really from the 1800''s, it was treated with kid gloves, that''s for sure. It''s in incredible condition for an old stone. I wonder if your mum (we call them "mom" over here -ha!) had it repolished at some point. Even diamonds from that period are chipped up and look bad.
 

LD

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No my "mom" lol never had it repolished and it does have a tiny chip to the girdle that I''d never noticed (spotted by my eagle eyed appraiser)! IF it''s really that old it''s amazing it''s survived - OMG when I think how I threw it about as a child. Eeeek!
 

coatimundi_org

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The diamonds look like omc--very cool. This ring is making me an emerald lover--I adore it!

I wouldn''t get an origin report either--just enjoy this beauty. What a wonderful piece!
 

oldmancoyote

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LD - if I see the markings properly, those are not UK hallmarks: first of all, there is a mark "Plat" which would make me think the metal is platinum. The UK introduced hallmarking for platinum only in 1976. Secondly, the "old style" (pre 1999) UK marks for any metal include a purity mark (an orb for platinum, a lion for sterling silver, and an old English rose for gold), an assay office mark (leopard for London, anchor for Birmingham, tower for Chester, harp for Dublin, ...) a date letter and a sponsor (maker''s) mark. To the best of my knowledge, all hallmarks - even very old/partial ones - include the purity mark; I''ve never seen a piece just marked for date (though I''ve seen several not marked for date). Also, in style terms, I''d say the ring is 1920s/early 1930s - and a lovely piece it is, too.

Diamonds are what I''d call Old European Cut - far too rounded and regular to be OMCs, but still open culets, high crowns and loads of sparkles! They may have been cut before the ring was made and reset into it at a later date, but my grandma''s engagement ring (dating 1934) had two fairly similar cut stones.

On the origin - if AGTA or Guebelin are not an option, contact Eric Emms in London. He''s a very competent gemologist, with an excellent reputation in the London trade.

Whereever it comes from, that emerald is wonderful.
 

LD

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And there was me thinking "I NEEEEEEEED an OMC to add to my collection" and all along, under my nose, I had two lovely ones! Note to self - check jewellery more thoroughly!!!


Oooops just seen your post OMC - I agree the absence of an assay hallmark is strange. I wondered about that. It's definitely platinum and the original shank. You may be right about the date because it fits with my original estimate (give or take) but what would the hallmarks be then? I have a hunch that the PLAT may have been put on later. It's in a completely different depth, script to everything else. I don't know why this may have been done but certainly the others look like they were put on at the same time. I also have a vague memory that this ring was designed by my grandfather for my grandmother and was a bespoke piece - maybe that might be why there's an absence of "proper" hallmarks?

I have spoken with Eric before on another ring and he was incredibly helpful - I think he also works in Birmingham but I may be wrong. It's a great suggestion to contact him. Thank you.
 

oldmancoyote

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I think those are just maker's marks - possibly indicating something about the ring's size or quality (too old for being colour letters for the stones, but perhaps something like that in a different code), but almost certainly not "hallmarks" in the UK sense of the word. Bear in mind that the assay office would strike all three marks: the purity, the office and the date - so before 1976 the piece would not be marked at all, since the assay office would not look at platinum.
 

pyramid

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I realise this emerald has been identified as such by an appraiser.

However Siberian Emerald is the other name for Chrome Diopside. This is mentioned a lot on tv shopping programmes, maybe you heard the name there and not from your mum? (Whilst flicking through channels, not saying you are watching these channels).


On a google search however there is some information about emeralds mined in Siberia and the mines closing and now reopening again.
 

pyramid

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My mothers engagement ring was bought in the UK in 1962 from a chainstore H Samuel it is marked 18k plat and the band is gold and setting for ruby and diamonds platinum. Ofcourse it may not be made here! Just mentioning in relation to oldmancoyote saying they did not mark it as plat at that time.

Edited to add, perhaps this says my mothers ring was not made in the UK because we usually call gold 18 carat with a letter 'c' and not a 'k' although lots of pieces have that letter 'k' now, I assume italian gold chains and such that come here in quantities.
 

CharmyPoo

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I have no answers but wanted to say the ring is lovely and I can understand how it started your love for gemstones and jewelry.
 

oldmancoyote

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Date: 3/24/2009 9:30:02 PM
Author: Pyramid
My mothers engagement ring was bought in the UK in 1962 from a chainstore H Samuel it is marked 18k plat and the band is gold and setting for ruby and diamonds platinum. Ofcourse it may not be made here! Just mentioning in relation to oldmancoyote saying they did not mark it as plat at that time.

Edited to add, perhaps this says my mothers ring was not made in the UK because we usually call gold 18 carat with a letter 'c' and not a 'k' although lots of pieces have that letter 'k' now, I assume italian gold chains and such that come here in quantities.
Hi Pyramid,

In reply to your two latest posts: no way on Earth that is chrome diopside. It has a completely different look.

I need to clarify something about UK markings. Prior to 1976, platinum articles weren't hallmarked. In other words, the Assay Offices were not indipendently certifying the purity and type of material and when it was submitted to the Office for testing. That did not forbid the maker from marking the item as platinum, in addition to any non-UK assay marks it may have had. (By the way, Italy uses 750/585 marking for 18/14k gold and the UK does not use a K or a C in its gold hallmark - just the number of karats/carats).
 

oldmancoyote

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This is a pretty good representation (on my screen) of what chrome diopside looks like. Much darker and slightly muddier green.

diopside-green-chrome.jpg
 
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