Taking its name from the Latin rubellus, meaning “reddish,” rubellite was rare in the ancient world. Its unique properties set it apart from other hard, red gemstones, generically known then as “ruby” or “carbuncle.” That distinction was lost during the Dark Ages but revived in the Enlightenment, as science undertook its quest to understand the nature of things. For two and a half centuries, rubellite has had a part of that great unraveling. Today “rubellite” refers to the pink to red variety of tourmaline, a large group of borosilicates. Coveted most for its endless combinations of vivid colors, just a handful of species —elbaite, liddicoatite, rossmanite —form rubellite, which is found as large, gemmy, euhedral crystals in pegmatites across the globe. With articles covering history, culture, science, and localities, our expert authors explore the fascinating world of rubellite and its complicated mineral family. Extraordinary imagery illuminates their stories, enticing readers into the paradox of rubellite and its tourmaline brethren.