Ruby Red Crystal

Ruby Red Crystal

Ruby is also the most commonly named precious stone in the Bible; an example being Proverbs 31: “A virtuous wife is worth more than rubies”. Did you know that ruby is the birthstone for July. Ruby is actually an instance of the mineral Corundum. The term ruby is reserved for corundum of a red color, with other colors called sapphire. Ruby is extremely rare and one of the most valuable precious gemstones in nature. Rubies are known for being the second hardest gemstone, next to the diamond. The gemstone ruby represents the sun, ruler of all planets. Like sapphires, rubies are very hardy and safe for normal gemstone care methods.

Rubies are a red to orange-red to purple-red variety of the mineral corundum, aluminum oxide (Al2O3). The best color for rubies is a deep pure vivid red to slightly purplish red. Corundum exists in many colors but is best known as the precious stones sapphire (blue corundum) and ruby (red corundum). Corundum, is hardness 9 on the Mohs scale? Only a few hundredths of a percent of Cr3+ ions are necessary to dope the corundum into Ruby. Corundum crystallizes in the hexagonal system. The asterism of star sapphires and rubies is a result of the present of TiO2.

The most famous source of fine rubies is Burma, which is now called Myanmar. The unique color in Burmese rubies is described as ‘pigeon’s blood’. The only source of “pigeon blood” rubies is Mogok in Upper Burma, about ninety miles from Kepling’s Mandalay, and are known in the trade as “Mogok” rubies. Burmese ruby rarely exceeds several carats; large flawless Burmese rubies can be worth millions of dollars. Burmese Ruby – strong red (Cr); best stones fluoresce in strong sunlight. Today, the term ‘Burmese Ruby’ is commonly used to describe all rubies of this deep, rich color. New mines producing “pigeon’s blood” rubies and vibrant colored spinels have been found in a remote part of Northern Burma (Myanmar) called “Namya”. Another major source of rubies is Thailand, well known for dark, brownish-red rubies. Now and then one of the rare star rubies is found. Mining for rubies is done by primitive methods, much as it was centuries ago.

To dream of rubies is to dream of success in business, money, and love. The sparkle and luminescence of rubies is said to be created by an inextinguishable fire in the heart of the stone. Jewelry set with rubies is worn to banish sadness and negative thought patterns.

The process of creating synthetic rubies is known as the Verneuil process. The production of Chatham rubies is not harmful to the environment. Another enhancement in rubies is diffusion with beryllium, or a similar element, which artificially adds color to the stone. The most common treatment for natural rubies is heat treatment. The clarity of rubies is not as much of a factor in its value because natural, perfect rubies are impossible. The fracture filling of rubies is also done intentionally, and it is not always disclosed. Glass-filling voids in rubies is not considered an acceptable treatment.

Microscopic inclusions, sometimes called “silk”, are a normal characteristic of rubies. These silk inclusions also cause star rubies to be semi-transparent. Ruby without inclusions is very rare to find. A ruby without inclusions can cost you twice as much as another that is much bigger but with some inclusions within. Fluid inclusions have been studied in rubies from marble-hosted deposits in the Luc Yen mining district, North Vietnam. If you buy a Ruby with no inclusions then it may be a lab created gemstone. Oriented rutile crystal inclusions cause a six-rayed-star light effect (called asterism) to form the popular Star Ruby. Gemologists use these needle inclusions found in natural rubies to distinguish them from synthetics, simulants, or substitutes. A good guideline is to first select a ruby with the best color you can find and then make sure the inclusions are slight.

Fascinated about gems? Learn more about making money with rubies

Ruby Red Crystal
Ruby Red Crystal
Ruby Red Crystal

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