The ruby encloses the brilliant red of the clouds of evening.
Pietra dura is an inlay technique using cut and fitted colored stones (often marble, semi-precious, and even precious stones) to make pictures. It was invented in Italy in the 1500s -- "pietra dura" literally means "hard stones."
Table with a parrot on a pear tree, Italy, 1700s
Prague Pietra dura picture with Saint Charles Borromeo
Roses over crossed canes, Florence 1882
Tomb of Jahangir, Pakistan
Saint Catharine of Siena Church, Ohio
photo by Nheyob
A contemporary marble table top, India, employing floral patterns of the Taj Mahal
photo by MyotisSI