Garnet
  • Mineral: Garnet            

  • Main Source of Origin: Russia(Ural), Madagascar, Iran

  • Mohs Hardness: 7.0        

  • Birthstone: January

Garnet comes from the Latin name malum granatum, which means ‘red pomegranate seeds’, perhaps because the small garnets look like the bright red seeds we find in a pomegranate.

 

Garnet occurs in many crystals but also in massive forms and in grains. It is commonly found in gneiss and mica schist and is used as a semiprecious stone and an abrasive. Garnet refers to a family of different gemstones. This gemstone has such a broad spectrum that it serves as a group name for the following silicate minerals: almandine, pyrope, spessartine, grossular, andradite, mozambique and uvarorite. There are at least 17 different varieties of garnet in total.

 

Rhodolite garnet

Rhodolite garnet take its name from the Greek word, Rhodon, meaning rose coloured. A mix of pyrope and almandine in its mineral composition, it inherits both pinkish and purplish tones. The most desired colour of Rhodolite is a raspberry red. Its raspberry shade lends it a versatile attribute such that it can be worn in both silver and gold setting. While a silver setting would enhance the purple tones, a gold setting would enhance the rose tones of the gemstone. Like all garnet stones, it is perfectly suitable as a daily-wear jewellery. Although more popularly found in ladies’ jewellery, its colour is also suitable for men. Worn near the face, it serves as a brilliant shade of red to match the natural shade of our lips. Rhodolite garnet deposits can be found in Brazil, Burma (Myanmar), China, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Sri Lanka (Ceylon), South Africa, Tanzania, the USA and Zimbabwe.

Green Uvarovite garnet

The precious dark, rich green uvarovite garnet that comes from the Urals is one of the rarest members of the garnet family. It is usually seen only as a druzy on matrix and seldom faceted. Since uvarorite crystals are usually opaque, only small corners of larger crystals have the transparency needed for faceting. Faceted pieces hardly ever exceed one carat in weight, making such garnet almost priceless.

Demantoid Garnet

Synonymous with ‘diamond-like’ in Dutch, Demantoid is a name derived from ‘Demant’ in Dutch, which is given to its glorious green garnet with an outstanding rainbow-colored brightness (fire) which seems to continue to glow even in the shadows. Demantoid garnet are the most valuable of all garnets. The demantoid garnet was presumed to have been first discovered in 1853 in the Ural Mountains of Russia. Its exquisite brilliance immediately captivated the people, its beauty considered exceptional among 19th century luxury collections. Mining of the demantoid garnet in Russia stopped in 1917 due to the Bolshevik Revolution. Since then, demantoid had been known as a phantom stone for at least one century until the mining resumed in 1991 with the Soviet Union breakup. Nowadays demantoid garnets are transacted on the international gem market and the Ural region still lays claim to be the sole

producer of the most superior of these gemstones.

 

Horsetail inclusion

‘Horsetail’ inclusions can be described by the form of feathery threads that tend to curve and resemble the tail of a horse. These radiation-shaped inclusions are commonly found in demantoid garnets. Horsetail inclusions are considered a desirable flaw in demantoid garnet. It is popular among European royalty, where the horse is a positive sign as a lucky charm.

Other information

  • Zodiac birthstone for Aries, Leo and Virgo

  • Stone for 2nd & 6th anniversaries (traditionally given for 19th anniversary)