Beauty and Symbolism

Antique Ring with Ruby & Old Cut Diamonds Set in Rose Gold, Circa 1895

The cultural history of gemstones is sometimes as beautiful as the minerals themselves. In all cultures, magical abilities, healing powers, but also various meanings were attributed to them. Especially the 19th century understood the latter: Not only the composition of different flowers or the posture of a fan could convey hidden messages, also the choice of a gemstone. Its red color, for example, made the ruby a symbol of passionate love. "Rubies are especially suitable for young lovers [...] In general, it is considered the symbol of the most passionate and ardent love," the inclined readers could learn from the ladies' journal Bazar in November 1886. A large, natural ruby from Siam (now Thailand) is at the center of this ring. The stone weighs about 2.40 ct and is faceted in such a way that its rich red is enriched by brilliant light reflections. When backlit, its color shows a subtle admixture of blue, but worn, the stone appears a deep, clear red. Two independent appraisals confirm its quality. A ruby from ancient Siam In this size and quality is a rare find, because the then active gemstone deposits are now exhausted and Thailand usually supplies only stones of much lower quality. Starting in the 1890s, rubies were recovered there only for a short time on behalf of the British company The Sapphires and Rubies of Siam, Ltd. A frame of ten old-cut cushion-shaped diamonds surrounds the ruby, again highlighting its color in contrast. These are old-cut diamonds that were probably put to a second use here. All of the stones are held in place by fine claws of rose gold and are open set so that the light can elicit beneficial reflections from them. The ring head with its precious stone setting was created in the last years of the 19th century. The ring rail was then renewed once in earlier times, possibly to accomplish a larger ring width change or to adapt the ring to a more modern taste. However, the change was done with care and exactly matches the rosé tone of the original gold setting. The thus renewed bar bears Viennese hallmarks and in Vienna we also discovered the ring. The ring is a true jewel, which not only convinces by its beauty, but is also suitable as a unique engagement ring or precious love gift due to its symbolism.

From an advertisement of the company The Sapphires and Rubies of Siam, Ltd. from 1890, published in 'The Economist': "The rubies come mostly from the mines in Chantaboon and Krat, the best stones and largest quantity being brought from some of the recently opened mines. The greater part of the rubies from Siam are dark in color, but parcels of the best colored stones fetch good prices, and many individual stones may be said to rival the best Burmah rubies. In consequence of the great scarcity of rubies from all other localities, these mines are now undoubtedly of great value."

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We want you to be 100% satisfied! That’s why we examine, describe and photograph all our jewellery with the utmost care.

If for any reason you are still not satisfied, contact us and we will find a mutual solution immediately. Regardless, you can return any item within 30 days and we will refund you the full purchase price.