Happy birthday, America! Our country is now 247 years old, and she has the beautiful birthstone of Ruby. Ruby is an incredibly popular gemstone and may be your birthstone, so let’s explore the world of ruby!
The color red has been associated with intense emotions throughout time. In 600 AD, warriors of Burma (now called Myanmar) wore rubies to make them invincible on the battlefield. We still use the color red to signify love and fast cars, and when we get angry, we “see red.” So, it’s appropriate that we value rubies so much because of the color that they are the highest per carat price of any of the other colored gemstones!
Rubies are the mineral corundum, which is colorless in its purest form. A trace element, chromium, will make corundum varying shades of red, including pink. If you have read any of my other blogs, you’ll know that ruby and sapphire are both corundum but with different trace elements causing the color. We have historically called the red version ruby and the blue version sapphire.
The finest rubies are mined in the Mogok region of Myanmar but are also minded in Afghanistan, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, Madagascar, Greenland, and other various places. Due to its foreign policies, Myanmar doesn’t use extensive modern equipment to mine and still use practices centuries old. Oftentimes, they mine in streams and rivers pulling up dirt and rocks to sift through. The lighter material of other rocks flows away, while the denser ruby stays in the pan or sluice.
The range of colors for ruby are true red to slightly purplish red. When it falls out of that range, we’ll then call it a fancy sapphire. Interestingly, some cultures will call a gemstone a ruby while others might call it a pink sapphire. A fine ruby is not too light or too dark in tone and has a vibrant, true red color.
The most famous ruby is called the Sunrise Ruby which was set into a ring by Cartier with two diamonds. In 2015, it was sold for $30.42million! Interestingly, another famous ruby is not actually a ruby. The Black Prince’s Ruby is set in the imperial state crown of England, but is a red spinel which is a completely different gemstone. We used to categorize gemstones by color before our technological advances, and it was found later to not be a ruby.
I would love to help you with ruby jewelry! Angela Cisneros Jewelry Concierge brings back the joy and confidence of jewelry shopping, so that you can celebrate with ease! My by-appointment approach means:
One-on-one appointments (personal attention and no crowds!)
Discretion and privacy (surprises remain surprises!)
Expert help from a Graduate Gemologist with 26 years of experience (yep, that’s me!)
Book your FREE appointment with me today! www.angelacisneros.com/book-appointment