The July birthstone, ruby is another form of corundum mineral of the red variety. Its name is originated from the Latin word "ruber", meaning red. Traces of chromium found in its crystal structure produce the gem's fiery hue. While the red corundum is referred to as ruby, all other colored varieties from the mineral group are called sapphires.
Color is the main criteria in grading a ruby stone and the most ideal hue should exhibit a vivid medium to dark toned red. The gem may also feature a range of secondary hues such as purple, orange, pink and violet. For centuries, Myanmar produces the highest quality rubies possessing the most desirable color also known as pigeon's blood—which is a pure red with tinges of purple.
Ruby, with its inner flame that lures, has long been valued by different cultures for thousands of years. In the Old Sanskrit, ruby is commonly called Rajbapura, which translates as King of Gems. Ancient Hindus hailed the stone as the "Lord of all Gems". Alongside with diamond, sapphire and emerald, ruby also holds a special place in the modern age as of the world's most precious gems.
Perhaps because of its gleaming red hue, ruby captures the essence of fortune, love, passion and undying vigor. It is also a powerful talisman for those surrounded by negative forces. Royalty adorn rubies for protection as they were thought to warn its owner of impending danger. They were believed to change color when peril is present and will only return to its normal color once the threat is gone.
Rubies are extremely hard stones, allowing them to set beautifully in all types of jewelry ranging from a fabulous pair of earrings to rings, pendants, and necklaces as well. With its captivating sheer red color that evokes passion, ruby jewelry is truly a timeless present not only for July babies but also for those celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary. Its immense durability best represents the very long years of enduring love and commitment.