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july birthstone: ruby

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Ruby, the July Birthstone

With its stunning red color, the ruby isn't just a popular gemstone; it's also the July birthstone. Rubies are considered the king of gemstones, and they represent wisdom, love, and health. Additionally, it's thought that a ruby brings good fortune to its wearer. If you know someone born in July, consider a lovely piece of ruby jewelry as a considerate birthday gift.

The Lore of a Ruby

Because many rubies have a color similar to blood, numerous ancient cultures associated this gemstone with the life-sustaining liquid. In Myanmar, which has been a source for rubies since at least A.D. 600, warriors believed the precious gemstone made them invincible in battle. Additionally, medieval European kings wore rubies because they thought the stones would impress their rivals, protect them from harm, and increase their wealth.

Like its relative, the sapphire, the ruby forms from the mineral corundum. If the corundum is red, it's called a ruby. If the mineral is any other color, such as blue, yellow, green, or purple, it's a sapphire. Large rubies are very rare. In fact, they're harder to find than diamonds. That's why the value of a ruby increases with size more than any other gemstone.

Rubies in Jewelry

Today, you can find rubies in earrings, rings, necklaces, and bracelets. You can also get rubies showcased in a variety of metals. Pairing rubies with gold tends to bring out the warmth of the red stone, while silver highlights the deep hue and adds to its sparkle. If you want something different, you can even find jewelry that combines rubies with other gemstones for a bright and colorful piece.

Not Just for Birthdays

Although the ruby birthstone for July babies is a popular choice as a birthday gift, there are other special occasions where the ruby makes a lovely present. Since the ruby is also a symbol of passion, it makes a sweet gift for Valentine's Day. Additionally, the ruby is the traditional gift for 40th wedding anniversaries. If you want to make your ruby even more romantic, look for one in the shape of a heart.

Whether you're looking for ruby jewelry for a gift or for yourself, you'll find a lovely selection when you shop at JCPenney.