Balas Definition

A rose-red to orange spinel used as a semiprecious gem, once confused with the ruby.
American Heritage
A pink or orange type of ruby spinel, a semiprecious stone.
Webster's New World

(archaic) A type of rose-coloured spinel once thought to be a form of ruby (now usually used attributively: balas-ruby).


Origin of Balas

  • From Old English bales, balais, from Old French balais, from Arabic بلخش (balaxš), from Persian بلخش (balaxš), a form of بدخش (badaxš, “balas”), related to بدخشان (badaxšân, “Badakhshan”), the region where they are found.

    From Wiktionary

  • Middle English from Old French balais and from Old Spanish balax both akin to Medieval Latin balascus from Arabic balaḫš from Persian Badakhshān , a region of northeast Afghanistan

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

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