In ancient India, the ruby was called the "king of precious stones" for its' rarity, hardness (second only to diamond), beauty and seemingly mystical powers. Long associated with the life force blood, ruby was a symbol of power and youthful energy. In past centuries, some believed this birthstone for July could predict misfortune or danger, and others claimed it would cure inflammatory diseases and soothe anger. Burmese warriors believed it made them invincible in battle; while Medieval Europeans maintained that rubies bestowed health, wisdom, wealth and success in love.
In addition to being the July birthstone, ruby is traditionally given for the 15th and 40th wedding anniversaries.
- Gemological Institute of America