Enormous Lion Emerald Found Helps Charities In Africa

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Enormous Lion Emerald Found Helps Charities In Africa

Stephanie Schnebly, Contributor

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Rocks are found throughout the world, though some are rarer than others. The most pricey rocks would usually be gems such as diamonds, rubies, and sapphires, just to name a few. But recently, “Miners in Zambia, in Africa, have discovered an emerald” ( LiveScience) though this is a gem, it is no ordinary gem. This emerald is 2.5 pounds of pure emerald. It is “about the mass of an adult human brain.”( LiveScience) and is 5,655-Carats. It has been called the lion emerald due to The mining company  “promising to divide 10 percent of the emerald’s sale value between two local lion conservation groups — the Zambian Carnivore Programme and the Niassa Carnivore Project.”(LiveScience). These charities were founded to help support anti-poaching of big cats such as lions, such as other endangered carnivore species. 

As marvelous as this stone is, it will most likely not last very long due to the fact that it will be auctioned off and most likely broken apart. Therefore the infamous newly discovered emerald will soon be no more.  Though the emerald certainly is large, it is not the largest in the world. There were previous mining companies who have found larger.

According to livescience, “a 6,225-carat emerald mined in 2010…” was found and is the largest emerald in the world to this day. It was called Insofu, which is a bemba name for elephant, due to its massive size. It was quite a spectacle at the time, as it was sold in an auction last year, though the price is undisclosed. However, It was then cut and refined due to wanting to distribute the stone and sell it multiple times. 

Besides these two marvelous wonders, there is another giant emerald that has become infamous due to its large size. The world’s largest emerald that has not been cut, “the so-called Bahia emerald — was unearthed in Brazil in 2001. It weighs nearly 800 pounds (360 kg)” (LiveScience) and it was about the size of a mini-fridge. this is by far one of the greatest gems seen due to its raw purity. However, this rock has some history to it as well, in these last ten years, “Fourteen individuals or entities, plus the nation of Brazil, have claimed the rock is theirs” (Wired) it was also said to be somewhat demonic due to bad luck that previous owners claimed to have such as kidnappings or burning of houses. 

Though the lion emerald is nowhere near the size of the Bahia Emerald, it is still quite impressive. All emeralds are very interesting in their own right. Emeralds are usually a greenish blue or dark green. They all have a complex chemical formula which makes them very rare and special. For an emerald green crystal to form, there are specific things that should happen, “beryllium must be heated to over 750 degrees Fahrenheit, under 7.5 to 21.75 tons of pressure per square inch, in the presence of chromium or vanadium.” (Wired) since it is necessary to have these conditions and beryllium, the emeralds are rare. Beryllium is only found in remote parts of the earth crust which makes it even harder to find it. “ On the Mohs scale of hardness, emeralds score 7.5 to 8 out of 10.” (Wired) this means that the emerald, as rare as it is, is not as strong as other minerals. If someone were to cut an emerald along a crack or crevasses it contains, he or she would shatter the beautiful crystal thus having a possibility to make it worthless.

Emeralds, though not the hardest minerals, are certainly more valuable than others, even more, valuable than diamonds themselves, “a really fine ruby, emerald or sapphire can be priced higher per carat than a diamond.” (Forbes) they can generally yield a hefty amount of money, “Quality Grade Low to High Retail Price Range for 1.0 Carat Emerald Commercial $30.00 to $525.00 Good $525.00 to $1,125.00 Fine $1,125.00 to $2,900.00 Extra Fine $2,900.00 to 9,800.00”(Singhal Gems International) these prices are only for reference, though they are also for the smallest amount that could be sold.

Sources:

https://www.livescience.com/63993-giant-lion-emerald-unearthed-zambia.html

http://www.singhalinternational.com/tvalue.htm

https://www.wired.com/2017/03/curse-bahia-emerald-giant-green-rock-wreaks-havoc-ruins-lives/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/carolbesler/2016/03/11/the-big-three-why-ruby-sapphire-and-emerald-top-the-list-of-precious-gems/#ff2a5b848ba1

 

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Stephanie Schnebly, Contributor

I am a Junior who aspires to be an animator. I have five birds, two dogs and two fish. I usually draw in my free time but I also like to play video games....

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