There's a delightful poem from the Gregorian calendar for July's birthstone, the ruby:
The glowing ruby shall adorn,
Those who in July are born;
Then they'll be exempt and free From love's doubts and anxiety.
The meaning indicated here is not unlike modern-day associations with the ruby, which is said to inspire self-confidence, a zest for life, and spiritual courage.
A transparent to opaque precious gemstone, the ruby is found in a variety of red shades. The name ruby comes from the Latin word ruber, for red. Rubies are found in Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Tanzania, Brazil, India, Kenya, Malawi, Nepal, Pakistan, Tajkistan, Vietnam, Cambodia, Afghanistan, Australia, Norway, Greenland, and the United States. It is amazing that the rough stones appear dull and greasy, but once polished, they can be as brilliant as diamonds.
I've always loved rubies, as my grandmother was named Ruby, and we often wore stones in memory of her. I think of it as a very romantic stone -- its color is so deep and clear and beautiful. I don't remember the exact biblical quote, but paraphrased, it's something like 'the worth of a virtuous woman is far above rubies'. Clearly this is a gemstone that has been valued throughout the ages, as it is today. My favorite rendition is clear, polished rubies set in gold, as in this example from 'Tootightlywound' on Etsy.com -- but rubies can look equally beautiful paired with silver and other complimentary stones and metals.