Rubies are one of nature's finest beauties, sometimes bold, sometimes delicate, but consistently fiery and passionate. They are among the four precious stones commonly put in engagement rings and other jewellery, so buying a high-quality ruby is exciting. Although rubies are usually red, the depth of their colour and the general quality of the stones vary greatly. If you want to buy a high-quality, gorgeous ruby, you need first to learn about its history and how it was created. You must also evaluate the colour, clarity, and cut of each ruby.
The History of Rubies
Pliny, a Roman scholar, reported red gemstones called rubers in his book on natural history in the first century AD. Although Pliny's book provides one of the earliest formal references of rubies, the jewels existed for centuries before Pliny was born. There is archaeological evidence that rubies existed in ancient Egypt and its neighbouring civilizations as early as 200 BC. Kings and warriors incorporated the jewels into their bodies, armour, and weapons during those early years. They desired to have the stones with them at all times to provide them with strength and protection from their foes.
Rubies were also used in ancient religious ceremonies. For example, some civilizations utilized rubies to perform ceremonies in honour of the deceased, while others believed that merely owning the stones would win them the favour of the gods.
Ancient civilizations vanished, the Middle Ages passed, and the Modern Era started. Despite these changes, rubies retained their worth and were widely valued as emblems of riches, power, and passion. Rubies are still prized for their beauty and symbolism.
Some facts why people buy high-quality ruby:
- Ruby has the highest price tag of any coloured gemstone. Fine-quality ruby per-carat prices have been steadily climbing, sometimes smashing auction records.
- Ruby has the highest price tag of any coloured gemstone. Fine-quality ruby per-carat prices have been steadily rising, sometimes smashing auction records.
- The per-carat price of ruby can also increase dramatically as size increases, especially for better-quality stones.
THE COLOR OF RUBY
The most important aspect influencing a ruby's value is its colour. The best rubies are bright, pure red to slightly purplish-red. In most marketplaces, pure red colours demand the most excellent prices, whereas rubies with overtones of orange and purple are less valuable. To be deemed the highest grade, the paint must not be excessively dark or too bright. The brilliance of the stone is reduced if the colour is too dark.
On the other hand, if the colour is too pale, the stone may be mistaken for a pink sapphire, even if the colour strength or intensity is excellent. That said, pink sapphires enjoy a following at far more competitive prices than rubies. Ultimately, the most desirable colour of ruby is the one you prefer the most.
Because inclusion-free rubies are almost nonexistent, the trade expects rubies to have some inclusions. The value of a ruby might vary depending on how apparent the inclusions are. The value of a ruby is significantly reduced by noticeable inclusions or inclusions that impair transparency or brilliance.
- When prominent and noticeable inclusions are situated beneath the table facet, they significantly reduce the stone's transparency, brightness, and value. Inclusions can also reduce the durability of a ruby. Significant surface-reaching cracks might endanger durability.
- Thin mineral inclusions known as needles are typical ruby clarity features. Silk is the name given to a mineral that is rutile and has hands in crossing groups. Needles might be short or long and thin, and they can appear to be knitted tightly together.
- Ruby can also have needles made of different minerals, tiny crystals, zones of colour fluctuation, or fingerprint-like inclusions.
- Some inclusions can really improve the look of a stone. The presence of rutile silk scatters light over aspects that would otherwise be too black. This softens the colour and distributes it more evenly throughout the ruby's crown.
- Needles that intersect can also cause the star effect, called asterism, when the stone is cut with a curved upper surface, called a cabochon cut.
Factors to consider when you buy high-quality ruby
A variety of factors influence the cut and percentage of rubies on the market to buy high-quality ruby. The crystal structure of a ruby determines its appropriateness for various cutting. The most common form is a flat tabular hexagonal shape. However, ruby crystals from some sources can be extended. A variety of factors influence the cut and percentage of rubies on the market. The crystal structure of a ruby determines its appropriateness for various cutting. The most common form is a flat tabular hexagonal shape. However, ruby crystals from some sources can be extended.
To accommodate these crystal shapes to buy high-quality ruby, the most common shapes of fashioned rubies are ovals and cushions, with brilliant-cut crowns of kite-shaped and triangular facets, and step-cut pavilions with concentric rows of rectangular or square facets.
Round, triangular, emerald-cut, pear and marquise rubies are also available. But these shapes are rare in larger sizes and higher qualities to buy high-quality ruby.
Ruby rough is very expensive, so many cutters try to conserve as much weight as possible. They might fashion flattened ruby rough into shallow stones, even though light escapes through flattened pavilions, causing an unattractive see-through area in the stone called a window.
Another element that impacts cut is pleochroism, which appears in various colours in different crystal orientations. For example, ruby is usually red to purplish-red in one crystal direction and orangy red in the other. Cutters can reduce the orangy-red colour by positioning the table facet perpendicular to the long crystal direction. Even yet, it's not always possible to position a ruby for optimal colour return since the weight loss would be too significant to buy high-quality ruby.
RUBY SIZE AND WEIGHT
Fine-quality rubies over one carat are scarce, but commercial-quality rubies are commonly available in a wide range of sizes to buy high-quality ruby. Unfortunately, the price per carat goes up significantly for ruby as it increases in size.