Rubies, the birthstone of July, are considered the king of gems and represent love, health, and wisdom. It was believed wearing a fine red ruby jewelry bestowed good fortune on its owner. A ruby is the most valuable gemstone and its value increases based on its color and quality.
A few rubies have distinguished themselves because of their sizes and extraordinary beauty, here are some famous and remarkable rubies found in history:
– Alan Caplan Ruby – Named after Alan Caplan, a famous mineralogist and gemstone dealer who acquired the stone in Burma. This stone is also known as “Mogok Ruby”, derived from the source of this fine gemstone. This 15.97 carats Burmese stone was sold by Sotheby’s in New York for $3,630,000 per carat of $227,301 on October 18, 1988.
The Carmen Lúcia Ruby is one of the finest and largest faceted Burmese rubies known. The stone was also mined from the prominent Mogok region of Burma in the 1930s.
This natural ruby possesses a combination of outstanding characteristics. Aside from its massive size, this extraordinary gemstone displays a richly saturated homogenous red color, combined with an exceptional degree of transparency. The Carmen Lúcia Ruby is nowadays mounted in a platinum ring with 2 triangular-cut diamonds totaling 2.38 carats. This magnificent ruby was a gift to the Smithsonian and the people of the United States in 2004. It was a gift from Dr. Peter Buck, in memory of his wife, Brazilian Carmen Lúcia Buck. She was known for her love for the United States, devotion to children, and appreciation for fine jewelry. The Carmen Lúcia Ruby is on display in the Gem Gallery at the National Museum of Natural History.
De Long Star Ruby – Remarkable star ruby, also Burmese origin can be found at the Natural History Museum in the New York City. This gorgeous vivid purplish-red ruby weighs 100.32 carats and has an eye-catching 6-rayed star effect. The DeLong Star Ruby receives its name from Mrs. Edith Haggin de Long. She purchased the stone in 1937 from Martin Leo Ehrmann, the renowned gemstone and mineral collector, and dealer. He traveled worldwide in search of rare and expensive gems and minerals, building up an extensive collection of unique minerals. Mrs. Edith Haggin de Long later donated the extraordinary orchid-red star ruby to the American Museum of Natural History. The gemstone was named the De Long Star Ruby in her memory.
In 1964 the Delong Star Ruby was the object of a scandalous burglary, carried out by Jack Murphy, known as the Surf and two accomplices. It was then ransomed and recovered. The De Long Star was found at a designated drop off site – a phone booth in Florida.
In May 2015, a new gemstone auction record was set by a most expensive ruby. The precious gem is known as the Sunrise Ruby. It is a 25.59-carat “pigeon blood” red Burmese ruby, which is set into a Cartier ring and flanked by white diamonds. A Swiss buyer paid $30 million for the ruby gemstone (over $1 million per carat). The Sunrise Ruby was assessed by the Gubelin Gem Lab in Zurich, where it was concluded that the jewel has a vivid “pigeon blood” red and of rare quality.
The color Pigeon Blood Ruby red is not associated with the hue of a bird’s blood but rather the color of a white pigeon’s eye.
The Sunrise Beauty has extraordinarily fine tone and purity and a well-balanced cut rare in rubies of this size. The Global Chairman of Sotheby’s said that in all his 40 years in the business, he has, “not once observed a ruby of this caliber.” It bears its name from a poem by Rumi, the 13th-century Sufi mystic.
The Nawata Ruby – Which was found in 1990 is an exceptional ruby gemstone that weighs 496.5 carats and is a national treasure of the Union of Myanmar. It is also called SLORC Ruby (State Law and Order Restoration Committee). This exceptional gem has an extraordinary story behind it:
The Nawata Ruby was found at Dattaw in the Mogok mining area of Burma. According to the book “Fire and Blood” by Diane Morgan and other accounts in newspapers, it was found by Than Htun, the owner of a brothel in Mandalay. He smuggled the ruby to Thailand and unsuccessfully tried to sell it for 2 billion dollars. One of the Thai buyers tipped the military junta in Burma, who then sent agents to recover the stone and the miners. Than Htun was then executed or sentenced to life in prison.
The Hixon Ruby is one of the collection’s best-known specimens. The 196.10 carats crystal was donated in 1978 to the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles by Colonel Frederick Hixon. It is considered to be one of the most perfect large ruby crystals discovered to date.
The Rosser Reeves Ruby – The legendary Sri Lankan star ruby is one of the finest and largest rubies of the world. The gem weighs in at 138.7 carats, and it is prized for its brilliant color and its distinct star pattern. The Rosser Reeves Ruby is named after its owner, who carried the ruby around for good luck referring to it as “my baby.” Before donating the gemstone to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC, in 1965.
Rosser Reeves was an American advertising executive who wrote “Reality in Advertising” and was responsible for the “Unique Selling Proposition” or USP. The qualities which make it a fine gemstone are its translucency, color and centrally aligned, well-defined star.
The Graff Ruby – A well-known cushion cut Burmese ruby with a weight of 8.62 carats. The Graff Ruby, an 8.62-carat Pigeon’s Blood Burmese ruby – widely celebrated as the most valuable ruby in the world – is a once in a lifetime discovery. Effortlessly complemented by brilliant cut white diamond shoulder stones the bewitching Pigeon’s Blood shade of red is phenomenally striking. One of the most important ruby gemstones that Graff has ever created, this is a historic jewel with a remarkable legacy. In February 2006. It was bought by a famous and credited London diamond and gemstone dealer and luxury jeweler Laurence Graff, known as the King of Diamonds. Graff paid a $3,637,480.00 at Christie’s. It was a new record price per carat of $421, 981. He had named the gemstone the “Graff Ruby”. After that, he sold the ruby to a Greek financier Dimitri Mavrommatis, but realizing his mistake, he changed his mind and bought the 8.62 carat gem for the second time in 2014. He paid 8.2 million Swiss francs ($8.6 million) for the Burmese ruby, at a Geneva auction.
For centuries the ruby has been considered the king of all gems. So, there is no wonder that these gemstones were the most popular gems among royal ladies and notable persons. Its beauty and value has been extremely desired since medieval times and is still highly sought after today. Without further ado, let’s have a look at world’s most famous ruby jewelry and their irresistible beauty:
Elizabeth Taylor’s Ruby and Diamond Necklace designed by Cartier, this amazing piece shows incredible craftsmanship and innovative form. Mike Todd gifted this ruby and diamond necklace to his gorgeous wife and actress, Elizabeth Taylor. In December 2011, her necklace was auctioned at Christie’s for $115,932,000. It became the most valuable jewelry auction in history, and the proceeds went to charity.
Next, on our list, we have Elizabeth Taylor’s immaculate ring. The actress may be more well-known for her emerald and diamond collection, but she is equally famous for her ruby jewelry.
“One day I’m going finding you the most perfect ruby in the world.” The romantic promise Richard Burton in the past made to Elizabeth Taylor. The Welshman went on to add. “It’s my favorite stone, red for Wales.”
After four years of searching, he ultimately discovered the right gem at Van Cleef & Arpels. During the process of acquisition, Mr. Burton secretly composed Pierre Arpels letters in French, a language he spoke fluently. Then, finally, for Christmas in 1968 Burton gave her the 8.24-carat Puertas ruby diamond and gold ring. The ring features a center oval „pigeon blood” ruby. She loved this Burmese gem, and called her radiant gemstone a “true color”. Designed by Van Cleef and Arpels, this gem weighs 8.24 carats. It achieved a record price for a ruby at auction, selling for over $4 million. The ring is designed in 18K gold and has diamonds surrounding it.
Victoria Beckham is a lucky woman. Her husband, David Beckham, the football player, has gifted his fashion designer wife with not one, but 13 engagement rings throughout the course of their 17 years of marriage. Three have featured gemstones, one of which is this beautiful ruby ring.
Simpsons’ engagement rings: The glamour of a ruby has continued to Hollywood A-list celebrities, including the Simpson sisters. Both have chosen sentimentally unique ruby engagement rings to showcase their bond of love. While Eric Johnson presented Jessica with a three stone ruby ring, boyfriend Evan Ross picked up a Vintage inspired ring for Ashlee. Jessica and Ashlee Simpson were simply left in amazement.
Queen Elizabeth II’s Ruby Necklace. London native Mrs. Greville left the Queen Mother many beautiful jewelry pieces. Some of them handed down to Sovereign Elizabeth II. Amongst her vast inherited collection, is an impressive Boucher on a Ruby Belle Époque necklace. It is designed in the Edwardian style with dense settings in a floral pattern.
Danish Crown Princess Mary fondly wears Queen Ingrid’s, Ruby Parure Tiara. Originally belonging to Sovereign Louise of Sweden, she passed her eternally beautiful Ruby Parure Tiara onto her daughter (future Queen Louise of Denmark) as a wedding gift. Queen Louise of Denmark wore her tiara with a wonderful ruby and diamond necklace.
Queen Amelie of Portugal owned a beautiful ruby necklace, which was originally worn by Barbara Hutton. She wore her exquisite necklace on frequent occasions including as a tiara, but most notable was with an Indian sari, captured by photographer George.
Popularly known as Duchess of Windsor, Mrs. Wallis is famous for her scandalous marriage to Edward VII, the Duke of Windsor. Mrs. Wallis Simpson is also known for her elaborate ruby jewelry collection; more specifically, her rubies! Her prominent collection includes a Cartier ruby brooch, a ruby cross pendant, and a ruby ring.
Prince Andrew proposed to Sarah Ferguson with an astonishing ruby and diamond e-ring. The royal ring was from a British firm, Garrard Jewelers. An oval-shaped Burmese ruby is surrounded by ten diamonds, encrusted in yellow gold. Her extravagant engagement ring valued at £25,000 in 1986.
Camilla the Duchess of Cornwall is said to prefer rubies, a stone that is linked with romance and has a royal history, as a result of its use in coronation rings. She has a two-strand diamond and ruby necklace. Both were personal presents given to the Duchess by the Saudi royals. Given the sheer size and value of this ruby and diamond demi-parure, it is almost unbelievable that Camilla has two of them. To the untrained eye, there is not much to choose between them, but the one she first wore in public in 2007 is bigger and more splendid than the second one.
Gemme Couture loves Rubies and value all of their color ranges, as they are all so pretty. If you are looking for a gift for someone you love or for yourself we have some very pretty ruby jewelry pieces in our collections.