Sunday, December 30, 2012

Garnets, Birthstone for January

Garnet is the birthstone for January. There is something extra special about this semi-precious gemstone that can take your breath away.  A good quality specimen can be truly exquisite.

Red Garnet Pendant. Sterling Silver Chain Necklace. Strawberry Wine
Red garnet teardrop pendant 'Strawberry Wine'
The name apparently derives either from the Latin 'granatus' meaning 'seed-like' in reference to the seeds of the pomegranate or from the Middle-English word 'gernet' which means deep red.  Garnet is a hard and durable stone that has been popular for centuries. Some have been found in burial sites dating back to 3000 BC

 Garnets can be found in several shades including red, green,orange, yellow and blue, the latter being the rarest of them all. The blue garnet was discovered only as recently as the late 90s in Madagascar and is an unusual, colour changing stone. In daylight it is a bluey-green but it changes to a warmer purple in other lights. Although some of the green variety can be much more valuable, the less rare and more easily recognised, red stones are usually stunningly beautiful, especially when teamed with warm gold or cool silver.
Red Garnet Earrings.  Sterling Silver. Wire-Wrapped Teardrop Gemstones. Strawberry Wine
Red garnet teardrop earrings (TEMPORARILY SOLD OUT)
 Here comes the short science bit.....Collectively, garnets are a group of silicate minerals. They include pyrope, almandine, grossular, uvarovite, spessartine and andradite. They vary in chemical structure so the hardness of the stone varies from 6.5 to 7.5 on Moh's scale.
Red Garnet Earrings. Sterling Silver.  January Birthstone. Ruby Berries
deep red garnet earrings 'Ruby Berries'
Like most gemstones, throughout history and across civilisations, garnets have been surrounded in myth and attributed special meanings. Known as 'The Warrior Stone', these  crimson stones were once incorporated into the armour of soldiers. It was believed they would protect them during battle. According to legend, Noah used a bright garnet to show the way through dark storms.
Red Garnet Earrings. Sterling Silver.  January Birthstone. Ruby Berries
Garnets are the symbol of fire, faith, courage and truth and also fidelity, grace and compassion. Traditionally they have been used as a healing stone to combat depression, lethargy and nightmares and to stimulate the bloodstream and pituitary gland. This stone is also the gem associated with the 2nd and 19th Wedding Anniversary.

If garnet is your birthstone then I wish you a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY this coming month.

click here to read about Amethyst, February birthstone 

click here to read about Citrine, November birthstone


  1. Such a pretty stone and what an informative post!! My birthdays in November though so I'm off to read your post on the November birthstone :)

  2. GORGEOUS!!! :)

    Loving the bright earrings :)

    Nice to meet you :)


    Cheers, T. :)

    P.S. even though I live in America I was born in England but most of my extended family lives in Dublin :)