Did you know that it was not until about 1800's that ruby, as well as sapphire, was recognized as belonging to the corundum group?

Before that date, red spinel and garnet were also designated as ruby.  It is a fact that jewels in the English State crown and some of the other crown jewels once thought to be rubies are actually red spinel.

The coloring pigment in ruby gemstones is chrome - with the addition of some iron for the gemstones that exhibit a brownish hue.   The red color varies with the individual deposits so, contrary to common opinion, it is NOT possible to determine the source area from the color, as each deposit yields various tones.  The designation “Burma-ruby” or “Siam-ruby” is erroneous and a reference more to quality then origin.  The distribution of color is often uneven, in stripes or spots.  As a rough stone, ruby appears dull and greasy but when cut, the luster can approach that of diamond.

Whereas the “Hope Diamond” is commonly known,  there are also some lesser known famous rubies of exceptional beauty.  One of these is the Reeves Star ruby which weighs 138.7 carats and is on display for public viewing in the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C.  Another is the Lone Star ruby which weighs 100 carats and is on display in the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

Picture of the interior of Laney's

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Our Hours:
Tues-Fri  11:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sat 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM

5121 Center Street, Suite 103
Williamsburg, VA  23188
(757) 229-7333