Many of us think of the rich bottle green color when we think of jade, and this is no coincidence. The more green jade you have, the higher its value. The most expensive examples of jade are found in the so-called Imperial Jade color, which is an intense and vibrant emerald green. Jadeite, one of two distinct minerals commonly known as jade, is the rarest and hardest variety.
Intense green jadeite, known as “imperial jade”, is also the most valued. However, durable jadeite can be found in many colors and is suitable for both intricate carvings and cabochons. The most expensive type of jade is type A. In addition to the type, we must also consider if it is jadeite or nephrite, and where it was found.
Imperial jade from Burma is the most expensive type of jade. It is the most expensive because it is of the highest quality, the most sought after color and is still today the most appreciated source of jadeite in the world. Culture and history have a significant influence on the jade market and on the perception of jade as a gemstone. Masks made of jade and incense burners carved from jade have been found in association with religious ceremonies ranging from ancient China to Mesoamerica.
In an area where large jade rocks are found, they can also leave traces of jade in the rock deposit, usually in former subduction zones that are now exposed thanks to inclement weather. A master craftsman from China worked with jade that came from Burma at the time and this jade is known for being harder, denser and producing a greater shine once polished. Both are highly praised, but because of the better qualities of the mineral jadeite, jadeite jade is more valuable than nephrite jade. Traditional jade bracelets are still a staple in the manufacture of jade jewelry and often incorporate other beads or materials such as gold.
From a mineralogical point of view, the value of jade also depends on the mineral composition, whether the jade is represented by nephrite or jadeite minerals. The biggest auctions in the world focusing solely on latex are Myanmar Jade Auctions and China Jade Auctions. Geographically, most jade is found around the edge of the Pacific Ocean, where that level of subduction has occurred, which is why most jade is found in New Zealand, East Asia, the United States, Canada, Central America and South America. Therefore, it is always good to consult with a jade expert to choose the highest quality jade with an appropriate budget.
Jade is also used to make small sculptures, religious artworks, and ornaments, in addition to the normal jade jewelry you see in the store. However, today, colorless transparent jade called icy jade has become very popular among younger consumers. The most valuable type of jade is imperial jadeite jade, which has a bright green, semitransparent and evenly distributed coloration.