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The Emerald Cut


Simplified Emerald Cut Example

Emerald cut is a specific cut for a gemstone. The cut is defined by having four main sides with the corners removed to prevent them from being chipped off. Many people think it specifically refers to different diamond cuts, but these shapes usually apply to any gemstone with certain exceptions.

In the case of diamonds, the round-brilliant cut   round-brilliant cut is selected very frequently for them in order to make them sparkle with rainbow colors .

Light passes through different stones in different ways, which means the round-brilliant does not have this effect on other gems. Other stones like rubies, sapphires, and emeralds can still get a round-brilliant cut, but it usually takes a lot of carat weight from the uncut gem roughs. Cutter’s also adapt the cuts to each gem based on how the uncut, rough gem has formed.

Development of the Emerald Cut

E1572 | medium | right | play | “Emerald ID:  E1572 – Weight: 1.61 Carats – Origin:  Colombia” As the name suggests, the cut was developed for emeralds. The emerald cut was developed by gem cutters  in the 1500s. It was developed to be gentle enough on emeralds to prevent them from breaking during faceting. The brittleness is not due to the crystal itself , but the numerous inclusions make most emeralds relatively brittle brittle . There are three grades of clarity for any transparent gemstone:

  • Type 1 gems are visibly free of inclusions.
  • Type 2 gems are often visibly included.
  • Type 3 gems are near-always included. Even auction houses proudly display included emeralds.

Emeralds are Type 3 gems, with the high number of inclusions being a defining aspect of most emeralds. The french term for them is “jardin”, meaning garden.

Emerald Cut Today

Emeralds do not have to be cut in the emerald cut since cutters have modern tools, and a better understanding of gems. Very frequently other gems like sapphires, rubies, and diamonds are cut like this too. It is worth mentioning that only the clearest examples of these gems are considered for an emerald cut, though this partially depends on how good the gem cutter is.

Emerald Cut in a Ruby


Ruby ID: R10031
Weight: 3.01 Carats
Origin: Mozambique

Emerald Cut in a Sapphire


Sapphire ID: B7309
Weight: 1.04 Carats
Origin: Ceylon

Emerald Cut in a Fancy Yellow Sapphire


Sapphire ID: Y4600
Weight: 2.03 Carats
Origin: Ceylon

Asscher Cut Emerald

E1216 | medium | play | “Emerald ID:  E1216 – Weight:  3.71 Carats – Origin:  Zambia”

While it has a different name, asscher cuts are the same thing as emerald cuts, right down to the techniques used to facet them. They just have a square shape instead of a rectangular one. Jewelers also differentiate this shape from a true octagon shape, where all eight sides are equal like a stop sign. The same techniques for cutting are used again.

Most gemological laboratories will mark down emerald and asscher cuts as “octogonal”, despite the distinctions between the shapes.

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