As summer’s sun bathes the world in warmth, the month of July ushers in the fiery glow of the ruby birthstone, a gemstone that embodies the intensity of love, passion, and power. Whether you're celebrating a July birthday or simply captivated by the beauty of rubies, this article will be your guide into the captivating world of this extraordinary gem and give some inspiration for truly unique July birthstone rings.
Engagement Ring Inspiration
July Birthstone History
Ruby, the birthstone for July, gets its name from the Latin word “ruber,” which means red. Throughout history, rubies have been cherished by royalty and revered by various cultures. In ancient Hindu culture, rubies were regarded as powerful talismans, believed to shield their wearers from evil forces and guarantee victory in battles.
Rubies were considered the "king of gems" in ancient India. The Sanskrit word for ruby is "ratnaraj," which translates to "king of precious stones." They were highly prized and believed to bring good fortune to their owners. Burmese folklore spoke of rubies bestowing invincibility upon warriors, enhancing their courage and strength on the battlefield. Medieval Europe held rubies in high esteem, considering them symbols of wealth, robust health, wisdom, and success in matters of the heart.
During the Renaissance and Colonial eras, European colonizers were captivated by rubies and shipped them back from Burma regularly where they became part of the crown jewels of many royal families. The allure of rubies has continued to this day with many notable engagement rings featuring the vibrant gemstone.
As one of her many engagement rings received from husband David Beckham throughout their marriage, Victoria Beckham debuted a stunning ruby ring in 2009. In a unique floral-inspired setting, a gorgeous oval cut ruby is surrounded by swirling diamond-encrusted platinum. And continuing the royal obsession with colored gemstones, Mary Donaldson became engaged to Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark in 2003 with a stunning three stone ring featuring an emerald cut diamond in the center flanked by two ruby baguettes.
Ruby Birthstone Color & Symbolism
The ruby gets its red coloring from the presence of the trace element chromium, and the depth of the red hue depends on the amount of chromium present. As a variety of the mineral corundum, rubies range in color from a deep, rich cochineal to a lighter rose red. Ruby gemstones may also have an orange, pink, or purple tone. The most valued ruby color is “pigeon-blood red”—a bright red stone with a tint of purple.
For centuries, rubies have signified passion, protection, and wealth. Ancient warriors in Burma and China adorned their armor with the gem to provide protection in battle. Some went as far as inserting the gems into their flesh, believing it created invincibility. Over time, the ruby has become a symbol of love and commitment. It is believed to inspire devotion and faithfulness within a romantic relationship. The fiery red color and sparkle is also thought to inspire sensuality in the wearer.
The ruby is also believed to protect the wearer from negative entities that leach positive energy, promoting spiritual vitality and wellness overall. In Hindu mythology, the ruby is associated with the sun and is believed to have the power to bring success, wealth, and prosperity. It is also believed to be a stone of love and passion.
2.11ct Ruby Engagement Ring Stack
Ruby Birthstone Characteristics
Rubies are a fantastic choice for an engagement ring for a variety of reasons that make this gemstone really shine.
Corundum, the mineral that rubies are made of, is stable under all normal wearing conditions, which means it's resistant to the effects of heat, light, and common chemicals.They have a hardness rating of 9 on the Mohs scale, making them second only to diamonds in hardness. Their excellent toughness combined with not having any cleavage also makes rubies resistant to breaking when being struck.
Rarity & Origin
The most valuable rubies are sourced from regions such as Myanmar (formerly Burma), Sri Lanka, and Thailand. Burmese rubies, especially those from the Mogok Valley, are renowned for their deep, vivid red color, often referred to as “pigeon’s blood” red, and are considered some of the finest and most desirable rubies in the world. Sri Lankan rubies are known for their purplish-red hues, while Thai rubies exhibit a vibrant, slightly pinkish-red color.
Rubies are highly prized for their rarity, durability, and their value is derived from a mix of factors such as color, clarity, size, and origin. The most critical factor to a ruby’s value is its color with the most valuable rubies boasting a pure, intense red hue with excellent clarity. Rubies can be some of the most expensive and valuable gemstones available due to the rarity of the most desirable hues being found in larger sizes with excellent clarity.
Rubies often undergo treatments to improve their appearance and durability. Heat treatment is the most common treatment for rubies, and it involves heating the ruby to high temperatures to improve both clarity and color. Other treatments include flux treatment, glass-filling, diffusion treatment, and oiling. It's important to be aware of these treatments when buying a ruby, as they can affect the value and durability of the stone.
Preserve the radiance of your ruby jewelry by treating it delicately. Refrain from subjecting rubies to strong chemicals, drastic temperature fluctuations, or extreme heat, as these elements can harm the gemstone. Regularly cleanse your ruby jewelry using mild soap and warm water, accompanied by a gentle brushing, to ensure its enduring sparkle.
Shopping for Rubies
To empower your decision-making when it comes to choosing a ruby, consider the following factors:
Color: When selecting a ruby, focus on its color. Look for a ruby boasting a deep, enchanting red hue that resonates with your personal style. The most precious rubies captivate with their pure, vivid red shades, imparting a sense of timeless elegance and allure.
Cut: Consider the cut of the ruby to maximize its brilliance. Opt for shapes like oval, cushion, or round, each enhancing the gemstone's natural luminosity. A well-cut ruby exhibits a dazzling interplay of light, showcasing its inner fire and radiance, making it a true marvel to behold.
Clarity: Though rubies may possess inherent inclusions, those with good clarity maintain a remarkable transparency to the naked eye. This transparency enhances the overall aesthetics of the ruby, adding depth and character to its beauty.
Carat Weight: When it comes to carat weight, consider your preferences and price range. Think about the size that resonates with you, keeping in mind that larger, high-quality rubies are exceptionally rare and consequently command higher prices. A balance between size, color, cut, and clarity ensures that your chosen ruby captures not just the eye but also the essence of true sophistication and charm.
Ruby Engagement Rings
Ruby engagement rings can perfectly cater to your individual taste, ensuring that your ring is not just a piece of jewelry but a symbol of your unique love story, crafted with passion and precision. For those with a penchant for enduring sophistication, classic ruby engagement rings embody the essence of timeless romance. Elan and Delexie achieve this amazing balance, Elan with a sparkly halo setting in smooth platinum, and Delexie in a subtle three stone ring with additional diamonds on the gold band.
Nature-inspired ruby engagement rings are a harmonious blend of organic beauty and artistic expression. With Melinda, sculptural wave-like bands converge from a split shank on a round cut ruby. And Rosalind resembles a rose at full bloom with an oval cut ruby surrounded by round white diamonds.
Vintage-inspired designs exude a sense of history, telling a story of timeless love that transcends generations. Claret and Loved both feature incredibly unique takes on vintage styles. Claret features a bezel set ruby atop a trillion cut diamond with a half halo crown of diamonds all set in smooth gold. Loved oozes old world charm with an embellished basket and dozens of diamonds in a wave-like band accentuated with milgrain.
In the realm of precious stones, rubies stand as timeless emblems of love, passion, and strength. An engagement ring, a pendant, or perhaps a pair of earrings – regardless of your choice, the allure of rubies brings an undeniable touch of grace and beauty to every piece.