With a new month comes a new birthstone, this New Year our first birthstone is Garnet, the January Birthstone and Zodiac Sign of Capricorn.
The History of the Garnet
Where does the word ‘Garnet’ come from? Its name is derived from the Greek word ‘Granatum’; this means seed of pomegranate due to its similarities of a deep red colour and oval like shape.
Due to the Garnet having a natural hardness and durability (between 7 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale of hardness) this fantastic gem is used as an abrasive, which is used in sandpaper, particularly for woodworking.
They’re Not Just Red!
The Garnet is a vibrant gem comes in every colour except blue and has many names depending on the shade and colour.
These are just a few of the names given to different colours of Garnet, mainly we see the Reddish Brown variety of Garnet, and the different colours are created due to the different elements within the gem.
- Purplish red varieties are called Rhodolite
- Orange and pinkish colours are known as Hessonite
- The dark green grossularite garnet is called Tsavorite
- Pyrope is the name given to the purplish red, orange red or dark red Garnets
The Perfect Gift
Like most birthstones, Garnet is also given as a gift on wedding anniversaries, for the Garnet it’s the 2nd and 6th anniversary.
In earlier times the Garnet was also given to friends to show their affection for one another and also to ensure that they would one day meet again.
Characteristics linked with the Garnet are love, loyalty, honour and devotion; it’s thought to have powers of healing and success!
If you’re someone who travels a lot, having a Garnet as an extra companion is believed to protect you and is gifted to those going on a long journey.
Did You Know?
- It’s said that Noah used a Garnet lantern to help him steer the ark through dark nights
- The largest Garnet ever found in the world was in 1996 by an Australian student. The Garnet was almost 100 feet wide
- Garnets mostly come from African countries but also come from India, Russia, Central and South America