Ruby, the red variation of corundum, takes its name from the Latin word "ruber," meaning red. It holds the distinction of being the birthstone for July. While rubies were once considered the most precious gemstones, diamonds have now taken the lead in terms of value. Nevertheless, a remarkable ruby of substantial size remains an exceptional gem, and those exhibiting a deep and vibrant color can command incredibly high prices.
Colour, clarity, and cut are three essential factors that significantly impact the value of gemstones. When it comes to evaluating quality, the most valuable stones exhibit a captivating, rich colour. They possess exceptional clarity, with minimal inclusions or imperfections, and showcase a vibrant and lively appearance. These key factors collectively contribute to the overall value and desirability of gemstones. To truly appreciate the beauty of rubies, it is recommended to view them in natural daylight. Fluorescent lighting can often diminish the intensity of their colour, so it is best to avoid it when examining rubies. In terms of value, rubies that are cleaner, meaning they have fewer inclusions, tend to be more highly prized. However, it is worth noting that many rubies contain delicate rutile needle inclusions known as silk, which can actually enhance their overall appearance. Finding a high-quality ruby suitable for cutting is a rarity. The majority of mined rubies exhibit a translucent rather than transparent appearance and often possess numerous fractures and inclusions.