The word ruby is derived from the Latin word rebeus meaning “red”. The ruby is among the most highly prized of gems throughout history. It is said that it combines Eros, sensual love, and Agape, spiritual love, and is therefore divine love in crystalized form. Rubies were thought to represent heat and power. Ancient tribes used the gem as bullets for blowguns, and it was said that a pot of water would boil instantly if a ruby was tossed into it. When the crystal is ground into a powder, it is placed on the tongue as used as a cure for indigestion.
Ruby is a member of the corundum family. Sapphires and rubies are exactly the same stone, with the only difference being in the color. Ruby is only red and ranges in hue from orangey red to a purplish red. Large rubies are very rare and very beautiful.
They are a 9 on the Moh’s Hardness Scale and are heavier than a diamond. The most beautiful rubies are thought to be from Burma, but they can also be found in India, Sri Lanka, Australia, Kenya, Tanzania, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
It has been said that ruby’s red glow comes from an internal flame that cannot be extinguished, making a gift of this stone a symbol of everlasting love. It is said if it worn on the left hand, that the stone will bring good fortune to its wearer. Rubies are the wedding anniversary stone for the 40th wedding anniversary.