Bridal & Engagement
Jewellers Vigilance Canada
July’s birthstone is ruby. It is valued for its intense red hue and has long been considered the “King of Gems”. Ruby is the most rare of the Corundum family of gemstones, of which sapphire is also a member.
The rubies of Myanmar (Bhurma) are touted as some of the finest available, exhibiting a fine “pigeon blood” red, which is most desirable and valued. Rubies are also found in Thailand and East Africa, where more iron tends to give them a purple overtone.
Rubies were thought to have the power to end a lover’s dispute and rekindle desire. Ancient medics associated its red colour with blood and relied heavily on its mystical healing qualities. Its rich red colour was prized by royalty and religious personages.
All natural rubies have imperfections in them, including colour impurities and inclusions of rutile needles known as silk.
Gemologists use the needle inclusions found in natural rubies to distinguish them from synthetics. Due to limited availability, most rubies are put through a complex heating process to improve their colour. As rubies are one of the hardest gemstones, regular cleaning methods are appropriate.