Rarest of Rare: The Legendary Story of Muzo Emerald Colombia – by Katerina Perez (Jewellery Insights by Katerina Perez – May 28, 2024)


When the Conquistadors landed in the New World, in their quest for El Dorado at the end of the 15th century, they searched incessantly for emerald mines. It would take another hundred years until the first emeralds were extracted from Muzo at the heart of Boyacá, 60 miles northwest of Colombia’s capital, Bogota.

From the 16th century onwards, Muzo emeralds have held a lofty position in the mineral world thanks to their rich green colours, wonderful clarity and distinctive crystal formation. First, they were prized by the Spanish and European royal courts, followed by the Mughal rulers of India, and then by contemporary waves of celebrities, such as Elizabeth Taylor.

“In terms of historical significance, Muzo emeralds have played a role in shaping the economies and cultures of the regions where they are found,” explains a company representative, “The Colombian natives mined and traded emeralds throughout South and Central America well before the Spaniards arrived. As time passes, their historical significance will only grow, and they will be remembered as one of the most iconic gemstones of their era.”

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