Celebrated in the Bible and in ancient Sanskrit writings as the most precious of all gemstones, rubies have been the prized possession of emperors and kings throughout the ages. Ruby is one of the most historically significant colored stones. Ruby's inner fire has been the inspiration for innumerable legends and myths, and to this day, no red gemstone can compare to its fiery, rich hues. It was believed wearing a fine red ruby bestowed good fortune on its owner.
Many people associate its brilliant crimson colors with passion and love, making ruby an ideal choice for an engagement ring. Ruby is the red variety of the corundum mineral species, while all other colors of corundum are called sapphire.
This most sought-after gemstone is available in a range of red hues, from purplish and bluish red to orange-red. Ruby is readily available in sizes up to 2 carats, but larger sizes can be obtained.
Burma was the major source for rubies for centuries, but now they are mined throughout many different countries around the world.
After being extracted from the earth, rubies are commonly heated to high temperatures to maximize the purity and intensity of the red hue, which has become a standard and accepted treatment in the gemological community.