Ruby Stone: Exploring the Gem's Enchanting Colors and Variety

Posted on August 7th, 2023 05:29 PM

The beauty of Ruby stone, called 'Ratnaraj' in Sanskrit, has captivated people worldwide. These precious gemstones are known for their vibrant red color and rich history. This red-colored stone is associated with various symbolic meanings. The characteristic color of these stones is not limited to only one specific red hue, but a spectrum of shades defines its beauty. All these enchanting shades are found in different varieties of rubies. Different varieties of ruby here refer to the different origins of these beautiful stones. Concerning the same, this blog features types of ruby and different colors exhibited by them. 

Unveiling the Origin and Formation of the Wonder of Nature  

Ruby stone comes from the mineral corundum, aluminum oxide. The red variety of the corundum is called ruby, while the blue variety is those of sapphires. Like all other natural gemstones, ruby forms within the earth's crust. The formation of the gemstones involve intense heat and pressure. These red colored gemstones are found in both metamorphic and igneous rocks. The ruby formation involves the process of crystallization, where the presence of aluminum and oxygen in the crystal is necessary.


Along with this, trace elements such as chromium account for the red color of ruby. The metamorphic process forms most of the rubies, and three rock types bear these stones. Marble is the host rock where the world's largest ruby stone deposits (Mogok mines of Burma) are found. Other than this, ruby deposits from Mozambique, Tanzania, and Madagascar are found in host rocks such as amphibolite. Basalt host rocks bear ruby deposits found in Thailand and Cambodia. 


Rubies are found worldwide, such as in the United States, Afghanistan, Australia, Madagascar, Mozambique, and Tanzania, and not to forget the classy red gems from Burma ruby

History and Cultural Significance of the Stone

Ruby gemstone, popularly called Ratnaraj in Sanskrit, means 'King of Gems.' The gemstone's beauty not only resonates around its color but also its significance. The stone has been associated with wealth and power in many ancient cultures. Besides the stone's color being used to express many intense emotions, such as love and anger, it was also related to the blood historians. For instance, the color similarity to that of blood; the people of Burmese cultures used to place ruby stones under soldiers' skin. The stone was thought to protect soldiers from wounds during wartime. Rubies are the birthstone for July and traditional stone for the 15th and 40th wedding anniversaries. 



Understanding the Vibrant Hue of the Powerful Stone 

These beautiful gemstones have been popular for their significance since early history. Apart from this, the magnificent beauty of the stone (highlighting the color) gains admiration worldwide. The magic of this vivid red color is in the chemical composition of the crystal. As discussed in the origin and formation section, chromium in trace elements gives a red color to the Manik Stone. Though the science behind the atom arrangement is complex, we have tried to add a brief point on this. 

Unraveling the chemistry behind the red color of Ruby stone 

The crystalline form of alumina is called corundum mineral. The corundum comprises aluminum and oxygen ions in the crystal lattice. The trace elements of chromium ions replacing one percent of aluminum give a deep red color to the crystal forming a ruby. The distance between chromium and oxygen is relatively short, and thus, green light of a specific wavelength is absorbed, and red light is reflected. This absorption and reflection of wavelength give characteristic red color to the stone. 

Read More : Top 10 Most Expensive Rubies in the World

Rubies and their Color Variation (based on origin)

The primary color of the ruby stone is red. Besides this red color, secondary hues like orange, purple, and pink are also exhibited by the stone. The intensity of the color and the origin impacts the value of a gemstone. In this section, we will focus on the types of rubies (based on origin) and the color featured in them. 


  • Rubies from Burma: The Burma ruby is known for producing the best quality of rubies. The country is known as the 'Land of Rubies', specifically those of rubies with pigeon blood red color. The well-known mines of the place are Mogok and Mong Hsu mines. The marble-type host rock is responsible for producing these highly prized rubies. 
  • These rubies from the Mogok mines feature red hue as the primary hue. The secondary hue is pinkish to purple. The rubies from Mong Hsu mines, though, produce red-colored stones but are often with a tint of blue hues removed during heating. 
  • Thailand Ruby: The host rock type for this type of stone is basalt rocks. These rubies are darker in shade as compared to the Burma rubies. The ruby stones are heated to lighten their color. 
  • Mozambique Ruby: The ruby stone sourced from this region entails the recent discovery known for good quality stones. These stones are obtained from amphibolite host rocks. Besides the red hue, the stone features secondary hues ranging from pinkish-purplish to orangish. The Estrela de Fura ruby stone is the most anticipated stone auctioned in 2015. This stone was sourced from Mozambique and is valued for its size and color. 
  • Madagascar Ruby: The rubies from Madagascar showcase a red hue with orange to purple overtone. The red-colored rubies mined from this region have good clarity, but the undesirable color zoning impacts their value. However, the color zoning is removed by heat treatment. 
  • Star Ruby: These types of rubies are the most coveted gems known for the unique feature exhibited by them, which is asterism. The star ruby stones from Burma are famous for their finest quality. The silk or rutile inclusions (cause for asterism in star ruby stone) are well organized in the stone. A tint of red and a dominant color of purple qualifies for a star ruby. 

Color Grading and Ruby Stone Prices  

In colored stones, color is the most characteristic feature that gives a proper definition to the stone and decides its value. The Burma rubies are undoubtedly priced higher because of their finest quality. However, red rubies from Mozambique and Madagascar mines are famous and considered the best quality ruby stone. The more vivid hue of the stone is, more are the prices. The prices vary with the occurrence of secondary hues from minimum to maximum overtones. The inclusion-free ruby stone is challenging to find and is priced higher. When buying ruby stones online, it is essential to consider these factors. For instance, the stones with pink overtones and a tint of red are priced low.


Similarly, the stones with a high pink hue overshadowing the stone's primary hue are sometimes misled. These pink-colored stones are not ruby; instead, they are pink sapphires. Thus, the gemstones must be purchased from an authentic gem dealer. The stones should be certified, and one should ask for the same before buying the stone. At Navaratan, the premium quality gemstones come with an appraisal form focusing more on authenticity.

Read More : Gemstone Certifications: The Ultimate Guide

To conclude, the ruby stone is precious and comes with the magic of the most lively color-’red’. It is evident from the above discussion that this valuable stone is the wonder of nature. These precious gems are known for their intense red hue and are priced accordingly. Shop for the certified ruby stone from Navratan now. 

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