It’s 2017! Your resolutions still firmly resolved, your planner’s blank pages stretch out endlessly, wonderfully blank, begging you to fill them with all the great things you’ll achieve this year. You’re still basking in the glow of all your holiday gifts and plenty of holiday cheer with your loved ones. Maybe, like us, you still have a carol or two floating around in your brain, and you’re still using eggnog in your coffee, rather than creamer (it’s not expired yet!)
And brisk January weather makes us all feel energized and ready to embrace this new year. Along with it, a beautiful birthstone! The January birthstone is garnet.
Garnet, from the Latin “granitum” (meaning “like grains”) got its name from its red hue and resemblance to pomegranate seeds.
As far as we can tell, Ancient Egyptians started using garnet in jewelry pieces as early as 3100 BC. However, some historians argue that garnet mining dates back to the pre-historic era.
Garnet is a highly durable gemstone (6.5-7.5 on the Mohs scale, depending on the specific variety) found all over the world, including Wyoming, Czech Republic, Greece, Russian, Tanzania, Madagascar, Sri Lanka and India. Most of the garnets in today’s market come from mines in Africa.
Garnet traditionally symbolizes peace, prosperity and good health. Superstition dictates that it brings its wearer eternal happiness, health and wealth.
While garnet’s rich, red hue is its most famous iteration, it actually has the widest variety of colors among any gemstone. Check out this chart from Geology.com that breaks down each color & variety of garnet, its specific composition, and its hardness:
|Almandine||Fe3Al2(SiO4)3||4.20||7 – 7.5||red, brown|
|Pyrope||Mg3Al2(SiO4)3||3.56||7 – 7.5||red to purple|
|Spessartine||Mn3Al2(SiO4)3||4.18||6.5 – 7.5||orange to red to brown|
|Andradite||Ca3Fe2(SiO4)3||3.90||6.5 – 7||green, yellow, black|
|Grossular||Ca3Al2(SiO4)3||3.57||6.5 – 7.5||green, yellow, red, pink, clear|
|Uvarovite||Ca3Cr2(SiO4)3||3.85||6.5 – 7||green|
|The compositions listed above are for end members of several solid solution series. There are a number of other garnet minerals that are less frequently encountered and not as important in industrial use. They include goldmanite, kimzeyite, morimotoite, schorlomite, hydrogrossular, hibschite, katoite, knorringite, majorite, and calderite.|
(The Table Above Scrolls Horizontally)
So garnet is versatile, durable, and gorgeous. But don’t take our word for it. Let us show you some of our favorite pieces of garnet jewelry!
10K Yellow Gold Garnet and Diamond Heart Ring
Stunning antique garnet and diamond cocktail ring
Temple St. Clair 18k Gold Rhodolite Garnet Heart Ring
14k White Gold Diamond Garnet Drop Dangle Earrings
Kabana 14k Yellow Gold Garnet Diamonds Ring
18k White Gold Princess Checkerboard Cut Garnet Ring
14k Yellow Gold Garnet Heart Ring
14k Yellow Gold Garnet Cluster Ring
14k Yellow Gold Marquise Garnet Diamond Ring
Are you a January baby? Or do you just happen to love garnet? Either way, this gorgeous gemstone makes for a perfect gift for yourself or your favorite someone with a birthday this month!