by T. De Witt Talmage

T. DeWitt Talmage

Proverbs, 8: 11: "Wisdom is better than rubies."

You have all seen the precious stone commonly
called the ruby. It is of deep red color. The Bible
makes much of it. It glowed in the first row of the
high priest's breast plate. Under another name it
stood in the wall of heaven. Jeremiah compares the
ruddy cheek of the Nazarites to the ruby. Ezekiel
points it out in the robes of the king of Tyre. Four
times does Solomon use it as a symbol by which to
extol wisdom, or religion, always setting its value as
better than rubies.

The world does not agree as to how the precious
stones were formed. The ancients thought that am-
ber was made of drops of perspiration of the goddess
Ge. The thunderstone was supposed to have dropped
from a storm-cloud. The emerald was said to have
been made of the fire-fly. The lapis lazuli was thought
to have been born of the cry of an Indian giant. And
modern mineralogists say that the precious stones
were made of gases and liquids. To me the ruby
seems like a spark from the anvil of the setting sun.

The home of the genuine ruby is Burmah, and
sixty miles from its capital, where lives and reigns the
ruler, called, "Lord of the Rubies." Under a careful
governmental guard are these valuable mines of ruby
kept. Rarely has any foreigner visited them. When
a ruby of large value was discovered it was brought
forth with elaborate ceremony, a procession was
formed, and with all bannered pomp, military guard
and princely attendants, the gem was brought to the
king's palace.

Of great value is the ruby, much more so than
diamond, as lapidaries and jewelers will tell you. An
expert on this subject writes: "A ruby of perfect color
weighing five carats is worth at the present day ten
times as much as a diamond of equal weight." It was
a disaster when Charles the Bold lost the ruby he was
wearing at the Battle of Grandson. It was a great
affluence when Rudolph the Second of ...

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