The Ruby is One of the Most Popular Stones in Jewelry

December 16 23:33 2021
The Ruby is One of the Most Popular Stones in Jewelry

Alongside diamonds, emeralds, and sapphires, rubies are one of the four designated precious gemstones. Admired for its beauty and depth, its history and origins are rich and colorful. 

The name “ruby” itself means “red.” In ancient Indian culture, rubies were referred to in the Sanskrit language as “ratnaraj,” or “king of precious stones.” They have been highly prized since then. It’s also the birthstone for people born in July.

Where Do Rubies Come From?

Rubies, like diamonds and other precious stones, are formed deep beneath the earth’s surface by pressure and heat. The stones are generally clear but the colors are determined by which micro elements are mixed in. In the case of sapphires, iron and titanium cause the stones to turn blue. The addition of chromium produces the rubies’ beautiful red color. 

There are four tried and true mining sources for rubies which include Myanmar (Burma), Sri Lanka (Ceylon), Afghanistan, and the border between Thailand and Cambodia. The finest, highest quality rubies have been found in Magok, the second largest city in Burma. 

How are Rubies Graded?

The color quality of rubies is measured by three factors.

  • Saturation. This refers to the intensity of the red color. The best rubies are a color called “pigeon’s blood,” which is a deep red color with a hint of blue.  

  • Hue. This refers to the presence of other colors along with the red. The purer the color of red appears in the stone, the better quality the stone is.

  • Tonal Grade. This refers to the amount of light that can pass through the stone. In cases where the light produces a light pink color, the stone is then called a pink sapphire instead of a ruby.  The stone can only be classified as a ruby if it maintains its true deep red color. 


Flaws are part of the ruby’s clarity that affect its brilliance and transmission of light. Ironically, these flaws or inclusions are qualities which will cause a diamond to be rejected or devalued, but they are characteristics that are highly prized in rubies. These inclusions are tell-tale signs that the ruby was naturally occurring and not man-made. Synthetic rubies are too “perfect.”

Where Can I See Rubies Online?

You can view gorgeous rubies and other gemstone pieces at the Museum of Jewelry. You can search for a particular piece, such as a ring or a necklace, or you can view them by collections. You can also research the histories and ages of the pieces. You can also access our blog, which will lead you to discover the rich ancient histories of jewelry, and our informative Museletters. Find out for yourself why rubies are so beautiful and highly valued. Find out more at

About the Museum of Jewelry

The Museum of Jewelry began when Shashi, a desk clerk from Eastern Airlines, traveled to South Africa and found exquisite pre-Columbian jewelry. As he collected more pieces, he set his favorites aside to create his own personal collection. You can view them online at

Media Contact
Company Name: Museum of Jewelry
Contact Person: Media Relations
Email: Send Email
Phone: 1-800-835-2700
Address:1500 East Juana Avenue
City: San Leandro
State: CA
Country: United States

view more articles

About Article Author