The World’s Largest Emeralds
Emerald crystals can grow very large. Learn about some of the world’s largest emeralds, whether rough, faceted, or carved.
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The Largest Named Emeralds
The Emerald Unguentarium
The Catalina Emerald
Formerly known as "1492," the Catalina Emerald sculpture consists of a 1,550-ct carved emerald held by a bronze statue of an indigenous woman, wearing a 18k yellow gold crown with over 27 carats of diamonds and standing on an intarsia base made from lapis lazuli, malachite, gold-veined quartz, and sugilite.
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This article is also a part of our Emerald Specialist Mini Course, in the unit Introduction to Emerald.
The Guinness Emerald Crystal
The Guinness Emerald Crystal, a 1,759-ct (12.4 oz) uncut emerald from the Cosquez mines in Colombia, resides in the collection of the Bank of the Republic of Colombia.
The Duke of Devonshire
The Isabella Emerald
The Isabella Emerald, a 964-ct (6.80 oz) cut emerald, is owned by Archeological Discovery Ventures, LLC. You can learn more about the history behind this shipwrecked emerald in our article on famous emeralds.
The Gachalá Emerald
The Empress Caroline
The Empress Caroline, an 858-ct (6.05 oz) uncut emerald from Hiddenite, NC, is privately owned.
The Patricia Emerald
The Patricia Emerald, discovered in Colombia in 1920 and named after the mine owner's daughter, is a 632-ct (4.46 oz) uncut emerald. It resides in the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.
The Mogul Mughal Emerald
The Sacred Emerald Buddha
Carved from a 3,600-ct (25.4 oz) African emerald in 2006, the Sacred Emerald Buddha statue weighs 2,620-ct (18.48 oz).
- A 7,052-ct (3.1 lb) uncut emerald crystal from Colombia, privately owned and considered priceless.
- A 1,965-ct (13.9 oz) uncut Russian emerald, on display at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County.
- A 1,861.90-ct (13.13 oz) uncut and unnamed emerald from Hiddenite, NC, privately owned. Discovered in 2003, this is currently the largest known emerald discovered in North America.
- Five unnamed large emerald crystals from Muzo, Colombia, stored in the vault of the Bank of the Republic of Colombia, weigh from 220 cts (1.55 oz) to 1,796 cts (12.67 oz).
- Fred Leighton sold a 430-ct (3.03 oz) carved Mughal emerald for several million dollars.
- The al-Sabah Collection from Kuwait features many beautiful emeralds, including a 398-ct (2.79 oz) emerald in hexagonal form and a 235-ct (1.66 oz) emerald bead.
- An emerald, gold and enamel 17th-century Mughal wine cup (7 cm) sold at Christie's for £1.79 million in 2003.
- A 161.20-ct (1.14 oz) carved Mughal emerald fetched $1.09 million at Christie's in 1999.
More of the World's Largest Emeralds
The Bahia Emerald
The Bahia Emerald, an 840 lb. stone discovered in Bahia, Brazil in 2001, reportedly contains over 180,000 cts of emeralds, approximately 79.38 lb. That includes the largest single shard of emerald ever found, described as "the size of a man's thigh." The events and personalities involved with this gemstone since its discovery have inspired much speculation, and its ownership is currently in dispute.
The LKA and Stephenson Emeralds
When the LKA Emerald was unearthed in 1984 in the Hiddenite area of North Carolina, it was considered the largest intact emerald found in North America. At 1,686.3 cts, it currently ranks as the 2nd largest. The name "LKA" comes from the company that owned the mine at the time. The Stephenson Emerald, found in the same region in 1969, weighs 1,438 cts. This stone was named after John A. D. Stephenson, a 19th century researcher of Hiddenite-area gems. In the 1990s, the American Museum of Natural History displayed both these gems.
Jeffery Bergman, SSEF SGC
Jeffery Bergman, SSEF SGC, founder and director of 8th Dimension Gems in Thailand, is an American gem dealer with more than 40 years of experience in gemstone and fine jewelry mining, cutting, wholesaling and retailing. His career has taken him to more than 50 countries and every continent except Antarctica. He has appeared on the BBC, CNN, NBC, ABC and GEO; and has been featured in Time, USA Today, National Geographic, Gems & Gemology and Discovery Channel magazine. He is a regular guest speaker at gem lab seminars and gemological association conferences and universities.
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