What is a ruby?
A ruby is a type of precious gemstone. With diamonds, sapphires and emeralds, rubies are traditional stones in jewellery, having been used in fine designs for centuries. The most distinct characteristic of any ruby is its deep red shade, which adds interest, beauty and an allure like no other.
This beautiful colour is a result of a natural process that occurs deep under the earth’s surface, where rubies are formed. They are made from the mineral corundum or aluminium oxide, which is a combination of oxygen and aluminium atoms. Sometimes, if aluminum atoms are replaced by another element or substance, and the heat and pressure conditions are right, rubies are formed. These are then mined, weighed and cut into the stunning stones we see today.
Interestingly, these same conditions are also what create sapphires. However, only those stones that possess a red colour are classified as a ruby. All others, whether blue, green, pink, yellow or anything else are categorised as sapphires. The resulting colour is all down to the mix of minerals and substances in the corundum, with the presence of chromium and ferric iron creating a red stone.
What does a ruby represent?
Over the centuries, rubies have taken on a number of meanings, many of which make them the ideal feature for a fine jewellery design or an engagement ring. For example, throughout history, the stone has represented power and protection, and was commonly worn in battles for this reason. And despite a fairytale, Dorothy’s red ruby slippers in the Wizard of Oz were also worn to protect her from evil, reinforcing the symbolism within modern day popular culture.
Rubies also have religious meaning, making an engagement ring featuring the red stone the ideal choice for couples following tradition. In the Bible, rubies represent wisdom and beauty, two very fitting meanings behind a ring and relationship.
Today, it’s widely accepted that rubies are the symbol of love, passion and romance, which is why they are such a popular option for an engagement ring. This representation forms the foundation of a relationship, and what better way to capture and keep the magic alive than with a beautiful ring that you can wear everyday for the rest of your life.
Why choose a ruby engagement ring?
The various meanings and symbolisms of a ruby are just some of the reasons the stone is chosen for engagement rings. While these can create a strong enough case, here are a few other benefit of a ruby engagement ring:
- Durable - rubies score a 9 on the Mohs scale of hardness, which means they are one of the most durable stones and ideal for a piece of jewellery that will be worn everyday
- Precious - rubies are particularly rare when compared to diamonds and other gemstones, which adds a sense of preciousness to them, on top of all the sentimentality of the ring and proposal itself
- Diverse - rubies can be paired with all types of metal, as well as diamonds, meaning you can choose a design that is right for you from a wide range of options
Types of ruby engagement rings
When it comes to choosing a ruby engagement ring, there are a number of types to consider. Firstly, there is the choice of metal, with rubies pairing perfectly with yellow gold, white gold and platinum. Here are just some examples from our collection that showcase the variety in choice that is available:
Rubies are mined in various parts of the world, including India, Thailand, Madagascar and most famously, Myanmar (formerly Burma), which is where the coveted and highly valuable Burmese rubies come from. As a result, these rubies are the most sought after for engagement rings.
In order to determine the quality and value of a ruby engagement ring, there are a number of things to consider, aside from its place of origin. Firstly, the higher the carat weight of a ruby, the higher its price tends to be. Although, as well as carat, you should also take into consideration colour, as rubies with a higher saturation often have greater appeal. The shade coined ‘pigeon blood’ is the most desirable, with its deep red hue and slight blue hint.
Unlike diamonds, inclusions in a ruby are generally well tolerated, unless they interfere with transparency or brilliance of the stone. If this is the case, value can be lost. Therefore, when choosing a ruby engagement ring, it is always best to seek the help of an expert in the field. This way you can be sure that you are getting a high quality ruby engagement ring that your partner will adore for the rest of their life.
For more information, please don’t hesitate to get in touch or visit us in store. You can also browse our complete collection of ruby engagement rings online today.