Ruby the birthstone of July, is considered the King of gems. A ruby is also a traditional gift for 15th and 40th Anniversary’s. The ruby stone represents love, health and wisdom. It is believed that wearing a ruby bestows good fortune on its owner. According to ancient legends the ruby contains the original spark of life known as “a drop of the heart’s blood of Mother Earth”. The word Ruby originates from the Latin word rubens which means red. These stunning gemstones range in color from the richest shades of red to pigeon blood and, pinkish reds. Rubies are considered one of four precious stones. The others are diamond, sapphire and emeralds. A ruby gets its coloring form trace amounts of chromium. The most desired rubies are those that are a very deep red, widely known as “pigeon’s blood”. Ruby stones are very hard and on the Mohs scale of hardness as they register at a 9, thus making them only slightly softer than a diamond. For a ruby to be considered perfect it must be the right shade of red, have a rich glow, and be brilliant and pure. Almost all rubies have flaws, and those without are considered exceptionally rare. Such rare rubies can fetch prices higher than those of diamonds of the same weight and quality. Almost all natural rubies are treated to improve their color. This is a standard practice accepted by the American Gem Trade Association.
The finest rubies where originally mined in Myanmar, which is how the term “Burmese” ruby came to describe the finest rubies on the world market. Due to Human Right’s violations there are still many restrictions in place banning the import of goods form Burma. As a result this has impacted the production and sale of Burmese rubies in the marketplace. Rubies are also found in Thailand, Cambodia, India, Afghanistan and Colombia. In 2009 a large deposit of rubies was found in Mozambique.
The worlds most expensive Ruby is known as the “Sunrise Ruby”. This 25.59 carat Burmese pigeon blood ruby was mounted by Cartier and considered one of the rarest gems in the world. In May 2016 the “Sunrise Ruby” went up for auction by Sotheby’s Geneva. It was estimated to be worth $12-18 Million dollars. It sold for 30.42 Million dollars to an anonymous buyer.