The ruby which is the birthstone of July, is also a symbol of romance and devotion making it an excellent choice when deciding which stone to have for an engagement ring. The ruby is also the traditional wedding gift for couples celebrating their 15th and 40th anniversary. In England, the ruby was used for coronation rings and to this day enjoys popularity among royalty. In 1986 Fergie, Sarah Ferguson who became the Duchess of York received a ruby engagement ring from Prince Andrew.
In the ancient language of Sanskrit, ruby is called ratnaraj, or ‘king of precious stones‘ and in the first century AD, it was the Roman scholar Pliny who included rubies in his Natural History describing the stones as being a very hard and dense stone. The origins of the name ruby comes from the Latin word ruber, meaning ‘red’. In the early days the ruby was also a representation of the sun, giving the ruby a more profound significance with integrity, devotion, happiness, healing, courage, romance, generosity, inspiration, and prosperity.
Since the ruby has been used as a gemstone for centuries, it can be seen in a variety of styles, from Indian jewellery to Art Deco and contemporary fine jewelelry. Being a durable material, the ruby that can be worn daily as rings, earrings or necklaces. In Indian style jewellery, rubies are often mixed with emeralds and diamonds using gold settings to provide a striking contrast to the red of ruby. More modern jewellery settings for ruby include white gold and platinum, whereas traditional settings tend to be gold.
Where rubies are found in the world?
Rubies have historically been mined in Thailand, the Pailin and Samlout District of Cambodia, Burma, India, Afghanistan, Australia, Namibia, Colombia, Japan, Scotland, Brazil and in Pakistan. In Sri Lanka, lighter shades of rubies (often “pink sapphires”) are more commonly found.
It is the colour of the ruby that is its most important quality factor. The most sought after colour is a strong pure red to red with a hint of blue. The ruby is often mixed-cut, with brilliant-cut crowns and step-cut pavilions. The most common shapes you will see are ovals and cushions but rubies of over one carat are very rare, so the price increases greatly with size. The Four C’s of selecting the perfect diamond – colour, clarity, cut, and carat – also apply to rubies.
Alan Caplan’s Ruby or the Mogok Ruby: It is really impossible to find out about the finest ruby ever present. However this stone holds the distinction of being finest with a highest per carat price. It is 15.97ct untreated Burma beauty auctioned by Sotheby in 1986. It was reportedly purchased by Graff and later sold for a huge sum to Sultan of Brunei.
The Private Diamond Club have now introduced rubies to their collection of precious coloured stones jewellery, along with emeralds and sapphires. The Roxana is an exquisite diamond and ruby ring set in 18K gold. The siam ruby is 4.98ct is set in a twist design with 468 diamonds totaling 2.37cts.