Ruby is the definitive precious red gemstone. For ages this gem has been cherished for its brilliant and vivid red coloration. Due to these factors ruby is a stone that can command one of the highest dollars per carat ratios in the market today.
As with all colored gems ruby's most important quality when determining value is the gemstone's color. Specimens of ruby will range in color from a pure red to a darker purple-red color. The red coloration will be lighter than the reds one finds in garnets. In the United States there is a distinction between pink and red when represented in rubies. Obviously pink stones are considered pink sapphires as sapphires and rubies are both varieties of corundum. As the stone becomes redder there is more debate as to whether it can be classified as a ruby or not. In other parts of the world pink and red corundum are both considered rubies. Many gemological groups will utilize graded control stones to aid in differentiating rubies from sapphires in this way.
Most naturally occurring gemstones will possess inclusions of some sort and rubies are no exception. The primary factor up for consideration with ruby inclusions is how visible the inclusion is. Inclusions that affect the visual qualities of the stone will certainly reduce its value. Needle-like inclusions are the most common inclusions to be found in rubies and all varieties of corundum for that matter! As with sapphires these inclusions are referred to as silk. Silk can in fact add value to the stone if it affects the play of light in a pleasing way.
Rubies are found in all varieties of fancy cuts available in the market today. Naturally occurring ruby crystals are hexagonal making oval and cushion cuts more attractive in the market. As the specimen becomes larger unusual cuts become rarer.
Rubies become increasingly scarce as the size of the stone increases. Gem-quality rubies over one carat are considered very rare and most stones available on the market will be below that size. The value of rubies over one carat does not scale usually and the value increases exponentially.
As with other gemstones it's increasingly common to find treated stones on the market. This is an accepted practice within the gem trade. With rubies the most common practice is heat-treatment. This is used to improve the color of the stone and to remove inclusions. Another treatment method that is utilized is a process of fracture filling. A material is heated over the fissures present on the surface of the ruby to fill these inclusions and improve the appearance of the stone.
The king of the gemstones the John Saul Ruby exemplifies beauty desire splendor and allure.
Kenyan Star Ruby is valued for its sharpness of star and intensity of color.
The color of Niassa Rubies represent passion life and love.
• In ancient China and India rubies were used to decorate the arms and armor of noblemen. They were believed to bestow good fortune on the wearer.
• Ancient Hindus believed that they could be reincarnated as emperors by offering sacrifices of rubies to the god Krishna.
• Burmese soldiers believed that inserting ruby gems into their bodies would make them invincible in battle.
• Rubies were popular in the Middle Ages as they were thought to bring good health.
• In ancient Chinese and Indian architecture rubies were placed in the foundation of buildings to provide good luck to it.
Location: Sri Lanka Africa Myanmar Asia and the Middle East
Historically Burma (modern-day Myanmar) was a leading producer of rubies for ages. Burmese rubies typically form in deposits of marble providing many of those stones the coveted "pigeon's blood" coloration.
In modern times gem-quality rubies have been found in many areas across the globe with commercial deposits being found in Africa Asia and the Middle East.
- Ruby's name is derived from the Latin ruber meaning "red."
- A synthetic ruby was used in the world's first optical laser created in 1961.
- The world's largest ruby is the Liberty Bell Ruby sculpted to resemble the Liberty Bell. Clocking in at four pounds the sculpture was stolen in 2011 and has yet to be recovered.
- Ruby ranks as a nine on the Mohs scale of hardness.
- Ruby's color is dependent on the amount of chromium present in the stone. The more of this element that's present the stronger the red coloration.
- The first synthetic ruby was created in 1837.