The Hope Ruby

Rubies: Just the Facts!

This month we turn our attention to rubies.  What do you know about the Ruby?  Following, seven facts about rubies:

  1. Ruby is one of the four precious gemstones. The others are emerald, sapphire, and diamond.
  2. The word ruby comes from the Latin rubens, which means red.  Rubies are found in many shades of red, from rich darkish red to pigeon blood red and pinkish red.   The red hue comes from traces of the mineral chromium.  The most precious rubies are those with a full, rich red color with just a hint of blue tones.
  3. A ruby is a pink to blood-red colored gemstone, a variety of the mineral corundum. Other varieties of gem-quality corundum are called sapphires.
  4. Ruby is the birthstone for July. It is also a traditional gift for those celebrating 15th or 40th anniversaries.
  5. Rubies are extremely strong, registering 9 on the Mohs scale of hardness. They are as resilient as sapphires and only slightly softer than diamonds.
  6. Rubies have been found all over the world, including in Myanmar (formerly Burma), Africa, Australia and the USA.  Most of the finest rubies were mined in Myanmar, thus the finest rubies are now known as “Burmese Rubies”.
  7. Almost all rubies have flaws –  Rubies without imperfections are exceptionally rare.  In fact, that is one way that a ruby is authenticated – if it has no inclusions, it is likely not a genuine ruby!

Sources:  GIA.edu, Wikipedia; Images:  GIA.edu, Cover Image: Getty Images / Dawid Wapenaar / EyeEm