May Birthstone Meaning: The History & Symbolism of the Emerald

May Birthstone Meaning: The History & Symbolism of the Emerald

Feb 17, 2023

emerald halo earrings

Emerald Birthstone Meaning

Known for its stunning green hue, the emerald is May’s traditional birthstone. Emeralds have a long history all over the world, as they’ve graced the hands of emperors in ancient India, adorned Cleopatra’s Egyptian finery, and decorated the Inca people’s jewelry and religious symbols. May’s birthstone is so popular in part due to its beauty and rarity but also because of its symbolism. If you want to learn more about May’s birthstone meaning, read on for an overview from our gemstone experts.

Meaning & Symbolism

Because emerald gems come in a variety of green hues, they’re closely associated with nature, rebirth, life, and growth. In some cultures, the emerald is also associated with success and wisdom, as well as love and passion. People who want to infuse May’s birthstone meaning into their lives frequently wear the stone in jewelry. Even kings, queens, and emperors in ancient (and not so ancient) times wanted the purported abundance and wisdom this stone represents, so you can find historical artifacts with emerald settings, including crowns, scepters, and thrones.

Emeralds have held great meaning for a number of cultures all over the world. You can find historical evidence of Hindus associating the color green with the heart chakra, making any green stone (including emeralds) their symbol of the heart and universal love. Emeralds are also associated with love in Roman mythology, where they’re linked to the goddess of love, Venus.

Emerald birthstone meanings even found influence in the Middle Ages as a stone of fertility, so any wealthy couple striving for children would keep it close in the hopes that it would help them conceive.


The earliest known instances of mining for emeralds include Egypt thousands of years ago. Most of the diamonds in Europe actually come from Cleopatra’s emerald mining efforts around 300 BC. Emeralds were also very common in South America. Although the ancient Inca’s mining methods remain a mystery, the deposits discovered in the 16th century by European explorers allowed emeralds to explode onto the world stage.

Emeralds Today

emerald diamond ring

Emeralds are among the rarest of precious gemstones — some of them even cost more than the diamond equivalent in carat and cut. Because of its precious nature, May’s birthstone meaning is even more significant and important for people born in this month.

At Pompeii3, we want to bring emeralds back to the people with our unique collection of emerald jewelry. In addition to mined stones, we also offer lab-grown and simulated options that are virtually indistinguishable from naturally occurring stones. Shop our collection to find emerald studs, bracelets, rings, pendants, and so much more.

Looking for an alternative engagement ring? Emeralds are an amazing choice! This May’s birthstone meaning is perfect for couples because of its deep connection to romance, love, and passion. Explore emeralds in engagement rings and wedding bands today.