Rubies have been cherished and adored for thousands of years. Its name originated from the Latin word "rubeus" which means red. It was considered a rare and beautiful gem by the Greeks, while the Romans referred to it as a "flower among stones".
Rubies belong to the corundum group. The red pigments are from chrome and their hues vary according to the individual deposits where they are mined from. The terms Burmese Ruby and Siam-Ruby refer to the quality rather than origin of the rubies.
The most coveted color is known as "pigeon's blood" because of its pure red color--though it also has a touch of blue in it.
On the Moh's scale of hardness they are measured at 9.
They are primarily mined from Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Brazil.
Rubies have very fine rutile needles that can be arranged with intersecting lines--the most beautiful being the six-ray star or the cat's eye--noticeable in cabochon cut rubies. These are naturally occurring phenomenons and certainly affects the value of the gem.
Red rubies symbolize passion and love and is considered a good luck stone for love.