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Ruby Precious Gemstone

Updated on October 22, 2011

Our Earth is made up of a variety of different materials like clay, sand, rock,mud etc and all these material have there own importance in giving Earth the unique properties that make this place worth living at. Not just these things add to the beauty of everything around, they also are useful in a variety of manner.

Stone have been the subject of mankind’s interest right from the early ages; they carved weapons to hunt animal, out of stone, and later on when they discovered that there are some special kinds of stones that describe the meaning precious. People started to find more of these stones and soon the classified them into precious and semi-precious stone. But naturally these stones are not that beautiful until they are cut to show their brilliance and qualities.

Now in this modern world we have the best technology to carve a stone allowing it to exhibit all its qualities. And the lust to have these precious items is a never ending phenomenon among people that will continue on until they find out something more intriguing then these precious stone.

Today the precious stone are mainly classified as: diamonds, emeralds, sapphires and rubies. Of all these diamond is surely the leader in many properties including value. But some times all of these stones can give tough time to each other when determining the most precious of all of them.

Carmen Lúcia Ruby 23.10 carats Burma
Carmen Lúcia Ruby 23.10 carats Burma

How Do We Get Rubies?

Ruby is a variety of mineral called corundum chemically called Aluminum Oxide. The red color to this crystalline substance is imparted due to the presence of chromium in it. Sapphire is also a crystalline substance that comes out of chromium mineral. In other words Ruby is a form of red sapphire but due to the tradition, we usually classify ruby as separate gemstone.

Rubies are a little harder than emeralds and since they are of the same crystalline structure as sapphires, their hardness is also similar to that of the sapphires. Rubies are found in a variety of different place but the experts also take into account the origin of rubies in determining their value. The Burmese Rubies are considered to be of best origin while there are other places also where good quality rubies are mined.

Flaws In Rubies

Like many gemstone notably, precious ones, ruby also comes with a number of naturally occurring flaws, these flaws are termed as inclusion in jewelry terms. These inclusion some times add to the value of a ruby as they certify a ruby to be natural when compared with a synthetic one, which does not have any flaws. However the general rule of clarity says that the clearer a gemstone the more its value and the same goes with ruby as well.

Rubies have also what is called as ‘silk’. It is like white needle like inclusions that at times add to the beauty of the gemstone. Rubies with the silk thing display the property of asterism and some times the cat’s eye effect which is very unique to occur.

The 4C's of Ruby

The value of diamonds and other precious gemstones are determined by the famous 4C’s method. Likewise the value of ruby is also determined in a similar fashion. But unlike diamond experts give more importance to the color factor in determining the value of rubies. Also the place of origin of a ruby is another important factor that can alter a ruby’s value.


Like I mentioned, color is an important factor that determines the value of a gemstone, like ruby and emerald. Color for a gemstone is divided into three component s i.e. hue, saturation and tone. The primary hue for ruby must be red as this is the color for which it is famous for, while it can have other secondary hues as well. The finest ruby is best described as being a vivid medium-dark toned red. Whereas the famous pigeon blood like rubies are also of immense value.


Cut is always a price determining factor for bigger stones. Different gemstones are cut in different manner to exhibit their maximum brilliance and colors. The best cut rubies should have a higher depth/width ratio than diamonds. Although deeply cut stones look smaller than usual yet they exhibit better color and that’s why rubies are cut deeply having a depth percentage of up to 65 to 80%.


Clarity is one factor that has the general rule for all gemstones i.e. the clearer a gemstone, the more its value. Clarity of a gemstone is defined by a standard scale, of which VVS type gemstone being the most precious one. It is extremely rare to have an absolutely flawless ruby. The value of ruby also depends on the type of inclusions.

Carat Weight:

Carat weight is simple price determining factor since all gemstones are sold by carat weight. Just like gold is sold in grams and it serves as the basic scale for setting up gold’s value, similarly carat in gemstones is used to setting up per carat market value of a gemstone.

Treatment Of Rubies

Precious or semi-precious gemstones generally have inclusions or cracks with in them and it is necessary to sometime give them a treatment of some sort to increase their brilliance and color. There are a number of treatments in which crack filling techniques are used to fill out cracks in rubies. The dissolving of inclusion to improve transparency and darkening of color are some of these treatments.


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