Ruby - meaning, history, style and care tips
The lusciously red ruby is the birthstone of July, and is the gemstone associated with the zodiac sign Cancer. Its name comes directly from the Latin word ‘ruber’ for the color red. In Sanskrit, the word for ruby is ‘ratnaraj’, which translates to ‘king of precious stones’.
Physical Properties Rubies are known for their warm red hue but they are also prized for their durability. In fact, rubies are second only to diamond in being the hardest of gemstones. The bright red color of rubies comes from the presence of the element chromium in the stone. Historically, natural rubies have been mined predominantly in Asia, but rubies can now also be produced synthetically. The French chemist, Auguste Verneuil, was the first to produce synthetic rubies on a commercial scale, using his flame fusion process.
Healing and Meaning The deep red color of a ruby has powerful romantic symbolism, communicating passion, fiery love, and devoted commitment. Rubies come in a range of tones from the pink of a flushed cheek to the vibrant red of blood, all tying back to a meaning of invigoration and health. It is believed that the ruby can have a positive healing influence on the cardiovascular system, energizing while offering protection. The ruby is a stone that represents strength and vitality, as well as lasting love.
Ruby Throughout History
Rubies have long been believed to offer protection to the wearer which is why the stone was frequently used in the decorating of armor. It was believed not only that the rubies would offer protection but, if the stone was of the highest quality, that it would make the wearer wholly invincible. Rubies have been highly prized for centuries, and are even mentioned in the Old Testament of the Bible.
The most famous ruby accessory is actually not a piece of jewelry but rather a pair of shoes. What Dorothy costume would be complete without a pair of ruby slippers? But in the original Wizard of Oz novel, Dorothy actually wears silver slippers. The studio behind the 1939 film adaptation, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, decided to maximize the potential of their new Technicolor and changed the slippers from silver to a bold and eye-catching ruby red.
The Ruby shoes were originally designed by costume designer, Gilbert Adrian, and while real rubies proved too heavy for the shoes used in the film (2,300 sequins were applied to each shoe instead), famed jeweler Harry Winston made a ruby version of the shoes for the film’s 50th anniversary. These magnificent real ruby slippers were bejeweled with 1,500 carats worth of rubies and were valued to be worth $3 million dollars.
Style Tips for Ruby Jewelry
The bold red color of rubies is so well known that we literally refer to it by the name of the stone: ruby red. This flaming, fiery color can make ruby jewelry at once classically regal and playfully cheeky. An excellent way to add touches of ruby red to an outfit is to accessorize with multiple ruby pieces, creating a subtle but consistent complimenting or contrasting color scheme.
The deep lush red of a ruby looks particularly gorgeous when set in gold, but brings glamor and depth to any piece of jewelry, whether featured alone or paired with other stones.
Care and Cleaning for Ruby Jewellery
Due to the exceptional hardness of rubies compared to other softer gemstones, they are less vulnerable to chipping, making ruby jewelry very well suited for everyday wear.
Care should be taken in regards to how ruby jewelry is stored as its hardness can make it potentially damaging to other jewelry pieces. Rubies can be cleaned gently with warm soapy water, using a soft cloth or toothbrush.
There are often unique and beautiful jewelry made with Rubies in my online store, it is a beautiful and classic to create handmade jewelry with. Shop all Ruby pieces in my online store and get your very own Ruby jewelry shipped right to your door.
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