Spinels occupy a unique place in gemstone history. Up until the 19th Century the intense coloration displayed by Noble Red Spinel lead some to mistakenly identify this gem as ruby. The source of confusion stemmed not only from color similarities, but also the close proximity of their deposits.
Interestingly, both the legendary 352 Carat “Timur Ruby” and the 170 Carat “Black Prince’s Ruby” that feature in British Imperial State Crowns proved to be Noble Red Spinels
Spinel was first recognized as a separate gem species in 1587. Spinel’s name is either derived from the Latin word for thorn “Spina”, as a result of its characteristic octahedral crystals having pointed ends, or from the Greek word for spark “Spintharis”, in reference to the gem’s bright red hues.
Spinel’s occur in many colors: reds, blues, pinks, oranges and other “Fancy colors”