July 4, 2010

July Birthstone-Ruby

Posted in birthstones, gemologist, gemstones, jewelry, rose diamonds tagged , , , , at 3:03 am by rosediamonds

Ruby is named, “King of the Gemstones” for several reasons.

Historically, rubies were worn by royalty only.

Fine quality rubies can out-price diamonds.

At one time (before gemological testing) all red gemstones were called rubies. This included garnets, red spinel, etc.

Rubies are in the same mineral family, corundum, as sapphires. The red color is caused by differences in trace elements where the crystal is growing.

Rubies usually have some minor inclusions. The most common being fingerprint inclusions and included crystals.

Synthetic rubies are chemically the same as natural rubies. There are several different methods to grow rubies in a lab setting.

Ruby simulants look like rubies, but are chemically “not rubies.” The most popular simulants are synthetic red spinel and red cz.

Top rubies are transparent (not cloudy or opaque), vivid slightly pinkish red to red.

Rubies are mostly mined in Myanmar (Burma), Vietnam, Thailand, Sri Lank, and Madagascar.  Rubies from certain origins have been banned from trade due to unfair human conditions, similar to blood diamonds.

Rubies have a 9 Mohs Hardness, and can handle ultrasonic and steam cleaning.

Glass filled rubies have been discovered on the market by GIA labs.  It is a clarity enhancement that should be disclosed to consumers.  If you find you have a “filled” ruby, don’t fret.  Your jeweler may have unknowingly purchased it from a lying gem dealer.

Rubies can exhibit asterism (star rubies).  They can be natural or synthetic rubies, and the stars can be natural or surface diffused.

Above picture is part of the educational photos available on the GIA website.



  1. […] Excerpt from: July Birthstone-Ruby « Rosediamonds's Blog […]

  2. Rubies are definitely one of the most attractive and visually satisfying gemstones around. Especially when you are looking a one with such an intense and regal colour as the ruby you have in the picture in your post.

    Personally I like the Burmese type of ruby, I just prefer the intensity of colour they display when they are used correctly in a gold setting in a ring or pendant for that matter.

    I always find that setting the ruby in yellow gold tends to help enhance the natural beauty of the gemstone because of the warm colour of the ruby being complimented with the warmer colour of the yellow gold… Makes for an excellent combination!

    Sam Kritsotakis
    Eskae Jeweller – Your Private Jeweller

  3. Gypelicle said,

    Hi, very interesting post, greetings from Greece!

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