Garnets are frequently thought of as red gems. Garnets actually come in a variety of hues. They originate from all across the world, and since the Bronze Age, people have used them as jewelry. Nowadays, most garnets are not stones of gem quality. Instead, they are largely employed as abrasives in industry. To create beautiful jewels, only rocks with the ideal size, color, and clarity are cut.
The Latin word granatus, which means seed, gave rise to the name garnet. Small garnet crystals resemble the crimson seeds of the pomegranate, suggesting that the phrase may be a reference to the fruit.
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Characteristics of the January birthstone, garnet
A set of silicate minerals with slightly varied chemical makes up garnets. Garnet crystals may include different concentrations of calcium, magnesium, iron, manganese, aluminum, and chromium depending on the environment in which they developed. Due to these variations, garnets are found in a variety of hues, opacities, and hardnesses that range from 6.0 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale.
The majority of garnets are created during metamorphosis, which is the structural alteration of sedimentary rocks like shale under extreme heat and pressure. These circumstances exist where tectonic plates converge. Under these circumstances, minerals recrystallize into structures that are more tolerant of the high pressure and temperature present. Some turn into garnets. Garnets can also be found, though to a lower level, in igneous rocks like granite.
Garnets are hard, so even when weather erodes the metamorphic and igneous rocks they crystallized in, they largely maintain their shape. They end up as sediment, which eventually turns into soil, sand, or sedimentary rock. These formations provide garnets to miners since it is simpler to remove the crystals. Australia provides almost half of the world’s supply. India, China, and the United States are further significant sources.
Garnets come in many colors
Because specific components are present, garnets can have various colors. Almandine crystals are dark red, brownish-red, and black because it contains iron and aluminum. Magnesium and aluminum are the causes of the pyrope garnets’ red color. Manganese and aluminum give spessartine its orange hue. Calcium and aluminum are present in grossular, which results in primarily green crystals as well as red, yellow, and cinnamon-brown ones. Due to calcium and iron, andradite garnets are red, yellow, brown, and green in color. Bright green gems are produced by the unusual calcium chromium garnet type known as uvarovite.
The opacity of garnets ranges from absolutely opaque to translucent. Some garnets have inclusions, which are microscopic fragments of other rocks that reflect light to give the stone a star-like pattern. Additionally, inclusions can make the gemstone appear to change color in certain lighting situations.
Garnets in history
Garnets have been used by humans since the Bronze Age. Jewelry made of red garnet and dating to 3100 BCE was found by archaeologists in the graves of Egyptian pharaohs.
The jewels were esteemed by both ancient Greeks and Romans. They wore garnet jewelry, such as signet rings with cut garnets for sealing documents with wax.
An extensive collection of Anglo-Saxon gold and silver metalwork was uncovered in Staffordshire, England, in 2009 by a man using a metal detector. The objects, which go by the name Staffordshire hoard, are from the sixth and seventh centuries. 3,500 pieces of jewelry set with garnets are among them.
The discovery of garnet reserves in Bohemia (in the modern-day Czech Republic) at the beginning of the 16th century ignited a thriving garnet jewelry industry in Europe. Through the Victorian era, the gemstone was still in demand, but by the turn of the 20th century, demand had decreased.
Mythology behind the January birthstone
Garnets and other red gemstones like rubies and spinels are heavily entwined throughout early history and mythology. These crimson gems, known as carbuncles, were difficult for early jewelers to differentiate from one another.
Numerous urban legends are connected to garnets. Garnets were thought by ancient warriors to bring victory. They served as the Crusaders’ traveling defense against injuries and mishaps. Ancient Asian warriors, however, thought that burning garnet bullets caused more serious wounds. The Hanza tribesmen used garnet bullets instead of lead ones to attack British forces in 1892 during fighting along the Kashmir border because they thought they were more potent.
Like many costly stones, garnets were once thought to have therapeutic properties. People once believed that garnets could cure depression and protected the wearer from wounds, poisons, and unpleasant nightmares. They treated fever with red garnets and jaundice with yellow garnets.
Learn about the birthstones for other months of the year:
The garnet is the birthstone for January. Garnets come in a variety of colors, however red is the most common. These include yellow, green, orange, brown, and black.
Is January a ruby or a garnet?
Garnet is the birthstone for anyone born in January. Beautiful gemstones like garnets can be used as pendants, earrings, rings, and other jewelry. The birthstone for January is red, which comes in both muted and vivid tones. Garnets come in a range of hues, but red is the color associated with January, according to tradition.
Is Aquarius amethyst or garnet?
The eleventh sign of the zodiac is Aquarius. Garnet and amethyst are the primary birthstones for Aquarius. The red stone symbolizing strength is garnet. Purple amethyst is known as the stone of tranquility.
Are garnets costly?
Prices for garnet stones can vary greatly because they come in such a wide range of colors. They typically cost between $500 and $7000 per carat for larger, flawless stones, depending on the presence of imperfections. Demantoid is the most expensive garnet, with a price that is towards the top of the range.
Garnetis it a crystal?
Red is frequently the first color that people think of when they hear the word garnet. This stone, however, is not limited to just that. The Latin word granatus, which means grain, is whence the word garnet got its name. The small red crystal grains that make up garnet deposits are embedded within rocks.
Its crystallography exhibits a variety of shapes, including isometric, trapezoid, and dodecahedron. The sporadic ones, on the other hand, are Cube and Octahedron.
One of the most complicated stones among gems is garnet. There are numerous species of garnet listed. Almandine, Demantoid, Andradite-Grossular, Hessonite, Transvaal Jade, Malaia Garnet, Chrome Pyrope, Umbalite, and many other kinds of garnet are among the most well-known. Strangely, garnet is never mined or acquired in its pure form.
Are garnets rare?
The most expensive and rarest garnet is demantoid, which is also one of the most uncommon colored gemstones. It is notable for its fire and brilliance. The most expensive demantoid is from Russia and may be identified by special byssolite inclusions with a horsetail pattern. The most costly hue is a bright green, and stones weighing more than one carat are quite uncommon. Approximately $1,000 per carat is the starting price for Russian demantoid. There is also less priced demantoid from Africa available without horsetail components.
Malaia Garnet, commonly referred to as Malaya Garnet or Imperial Garnet, is a pyrope-almandine-spessartite combination. From slightly pinkish orange to reddish orange to yellowish orange, it comes in a variety of colors. Tone ranges from being light to being dark. The Umba River valley, which straddles the border between northern Tanzania and southern Kenya, is where malaia garnet was initially found in the early 1970s. In southern Tanzania, deposits of a related substance were also discovered in 1993. The highly uncommon Pink Malaia Garnets retail for $1,000 to $3,000 per carat, while fine quality stones in bigger sizes sell for $300 to $400 per carat.
What shade is appropriate for January?
Just that reminder is provided by the birthstone for January, the iciest month of the year. The best January birthstone color is the garnet, a blood-red stone that almost seems to pulse with warmth. Wearing one will provide brightness and warmth to even the coldest January day.
What stands for garnet?
Garnets have traditionally been thought of as symbols of love due to their connections to the heart, blood, inner fire, and life force. The meaning of garnet includes friendliness as well. These relationships are surprisingly evil, though.
In Greek mythology, Hades, the deity of the Underworld, abducted Persephone, the goddess of plants. If she didn’t consume any food in that domain, she would only be able to return to the surface world. She had to spend those many months of the year in the Underworld because she consumed some pomegranate seeds, which causes the winter months.
Garnet has come to symbolize a friend or loved one’s safe return due to its link with pomegranate seeds. Garnets were frequently traded between friends as a sign that they would re-connect and were believed to safeguard travelers on their voyages. (However, in the myth, Persephone is forced to go back to Hades by the pomegranate seeds.)
A diamond or garnet?
Garnets are formally classified as gemstones, although due to their abundance, they are not nearly as precious as other gemstones like diamonds, rubies, and emeralds. Like other gemstones, a garnet’s individual value is established using the 4 Cs. Red is thought to be the most typical garnet color, whereas blue is the rarest. Yellow, peach, green, orange, brown, purple, and pink are more hues. The value of a garnet may also be affected by its unique ability to change hue. This is highly unusual, hence the value of those special stones with this occurrence is very high. The color of a garnet is obviously the most significant feature. However, a garnet’s clarity, cut, and carat weight also play a role in determining its value.
What shade of stone is garnet?
The gorgeous and varied garnet is a lucky birthstone for those who were born in January. While red is the most prevalent color of garnets, they also come in a stunning array of other hues, including orange, yellow, purple, and vivid green. Even garnets have been known to shift from blue to purple depending on the illumination. The ability of the garnet birthstone to bestow the bearer with good health, riches, and happiness is seen by some to be its genuine value.