Rubies are a variety of the corundum mineral group. Ruby is the red color variety while sapphire represents the other colors of corundum. Its name comes from Latin "Rubeus" or "Ruber" which means red. Its hue ranges from pink to blood red, or pigeon blood red; the latter being the most sought after and for which the price rises more than for diamonds of a similar size as well as being rarer.
It is one of the precious gems alongside diamonds, sapphires and emeralds. True rubies have inclusions that resemble embedded silk, which differentiates them from synthetic rubies and increases their value. Some rare specimens show an asterism effect and others the "cat's eye" effect.
Called "little burning ember" by the Romans who already used it for their ornaments and art, in the Middle Ages they gained importance and were used in crafting royal jewelry. We can mention, for example, the rings of Saint Louis (Louis IX of France) and Charles V. It is also worth mentioning the headdress created for the sacrum of Charles IV in 1347 for having sapphires, emeralds and pearls as well as a 250-carat oriental ruby set in gold. It is today on display at the St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague. On the other hand, in other pieces of royal jewelry, it has happened that what they believed to be rubies have turned out to be spinels, as in the case of the Imperial Crown of the British State.
For the Hindus it is also an important stone, which they refer to as "Ratnaraj", "the king of precious stones". For them it relates to Surya, the solar deity and leader of the 9 celestial bodies. In the Muslim religion it also has a very important place since in the Koran it is said that it is related to the creation of the human being. Many eastern sovereigns wore rubies in their jewelry and clothing, on their thrones and even in the harnesses of their horses as a symbol of power and protection at the same time.
Alchemical gem that promotes transformation and change, it is the stone of life, of the internal fire of passion and desire. It focuses energy and gives joy and desire to live more fully. It connects us with others, with the Whole and the divine will. The ruby stimulates creativity, passions, courage and wisdom as well as helping with the development of perseverance and confidence in each person. It allows reaching more easily an emotional harmony and a healthy sexuality.
On the physical level, it is said that it improves blood circulation, to ensure good kidney function and to regulate cholesterol and body temperature. It is also said that when used as a talisman they protect against diseases, accidents and injuries since they were considered as "drops of blood from the heart of Mother Earth".
90% of the world's production of rubies and the most reputed come from the Mogok region of Burma (Myanmar). Because of them the Burmese monarchs were called the "Kings of jewels". Today these mines are empty, so the rubies in Burma are mined in Mong Hsu, in the northeast of the country.
There are also deposits of this gem in India, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Nepal, Madagascar and the United States.