A Bit About Buying Antique Ruby Jewelry

Mickey | Jewelry | Monday, February 7th, 2011

Buying any antique jewelry is challenging for m any reasons. Not only do you have to know how to judge the quality of rubies and have some working knowledge of precious metals you also have to know both antiques and antique jewelry. Antique ruby jewelry can be especially difficult because of the issues with rubies and treatments. 95% of rubies mined are not very high quality. Rubies are not as hard as diamonds and the intense heat and pressures during their creation will leave cracks and fissures in the gem. Also because rubies are valued based on the intensity of the red color, the redder the ruby the more highly it is prized. When rubies like this are mined they are treated to deepen the color and render the cracks invisible to the naked eye.

This practice of treating rubies is only about 50 years old. This means that if you buy ruby jewelry which is antique the chances are you will be getting an untreated stone. This is actually a good thing when you think about the fact that if you give a new paint job to a totaled car it is still a totaled car. Treatments increase the salability of the gems by hiding imperfections but they do not increase the value of the stone. The problem is that most jewelers and distributers will not tell potential buyers this and they will make a copy of a Victorian ring with a treated stone and call it antique because the style is old.

Before buying any antique ruby jewelry you need to make sure of several things and have these things reflected in both your guarantee and certificates of authenticity. The first is the nature of the ruby. Where it was mined and when and whether it has been treated or not. The next thing is the actual age of the ring. These are all very important considerations because if you want an antique you want a real antique and not an antique style.

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