[caption id="attachment_803" align="aligncenter" width="449"]Photo via http://ow.ly/Pm4XN Photo via http://ow.ly/Pm4XN[/caption]

This country's independence is celebrated during the month of July, so red is a popular color, along with white and blue. July is also a great month when it comes to birthstones because the red ruby is one of the most popular and definitely one of the most beautiful of all gemstones. The ruby, emerald, sapphire, and diamond make up the group of precious stones. This means that the ruby is one of the most valued gemstones known to man. The word "ruby" comes from the Latin word "rubeus," which means "red." Ruby is a corundum, a mineral group that also includes sapphires, and it is the second-hardest stone, with diamond being the hardest.

History of the Ruby

The ruby has always been a symbol of valor and integrity. Many ancient warriors believed that implanting the stone under their skin brought them endurance and courage during battle. Throughout history, the beautiful red stone was thought to bring prosperity, generosity, devotion, joy, love, and inspiration to those who wear it. It was also thought to be a curer of diseases and bring good health and peace to the wearer as well.

The color red is associated with passion, fury, desire, and power. When you think of a fast car, you picture a red sports car. When you think of sending flowers to a lover, you picture red roses. Cultures during ancient times thought rubies represented the blood in their bodies giving them life and believed that rubies gave them power.

Rubies are mentioned as being precious in the Bible, and Hindus during ancient times believed that they would be reincarnated as an emperor if they offered rubies to Krishna. It is a common legend for people in India to believe that when someone owns a ruby, they will have peace with their enemies. And during medieval times, Europeans thought that the ruby brought them wealth, health, and love.

Colors of the Ruby

[caption id="attachment_804" align="alignleft" width="214"]Photo via http://ow.ly/Pm594 Photo via http://ow.ly/Pm594[/caption]

 

Because the ruby is a corundum, the deep red color with a slight blue undertone comes from chromium. Rubies can range from a darker red-brown to a bright red. The quality of each stone largely lies in its color. If the red is too light, it may be classified as a pink sapphire. The vibrant red hue with a blue undertone is called "pigeon's blood" and is usually classified as the highest-quality ruby color, while reddish-brown rubies are usually less desirable. When the natural color of the stone is not high-quality, it can be treated with heat to improve the color.

 

 

 

Locations of the Ruby

Rubies are currently mined in Myanmar (Burma), Sri Lanka, Tanzania, and Thailand. Other important sources for rubies around the world include Australia, India, Kenya, Malawi, Nepal, Zimbabwe, the United States, Vietnam, Tajikistan, Pakistan, Mozambique, Madagascar, Cambodia, Brazil, and Afghanistan. The rubies that are classified as the most valuable in the world and have the best natural color to them come from Mogok, Myanmar, while the central trade location for rubies is in Bangkok, Thailand.