The Stone of Eternal Friendship

ADORA by Simona By ADORA by Simona, 13th Jan 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Celebrities>Style

The traditional birthstone for January is Garnet. Purity, truth, faithfulness and friendship are some of the properties with which this lovely gemstone is associated.

Garnet, the traditional Birthstone for January

The traditional birthstone for those born in the month of January is Garnet. It symbolizes a light heart, loyalty and enduring affections. It also signifies eternal friendship and trust, and is the perfect gift for a friend. Garnet is the Zodiac birthstone for Aquarius and the stone that celebrates the 2nd anniversary of marriage.

Etymology, Myths

The word Garnet, derived from the Latin granatum which means “grain”, is possibly a reference to pomegranate because some garnet crystals resemble the red color and seeds of this fruit. There are many different myths about the origins of garnet. One such myth suggests that the garnet originated with Persephone, the Greek goddess of sunshine. Persephone was captured by Hades, the god of the underworld. Before Hades released Persephone, he wanted to guarantee her return, so he gave her some pomegranate seeds.

Mineral Composition

Most people think of the garnet as a red gemstone, but in fact, Garnet is a group of minerals that comes in a rainbow of colors, from the fiery orange of Mandarin Garnet to the vibrant green of Tsavorite Garnet and to the most widely recognized deep red color of Pyrope Garnet. The garnet’s variety of colors comes from metals such as manganese, iron, calcium, and aluminum. Some varieties known as Star Garnet even contain mineral fibers that produce the illusion of a four or six-rayed star within the stone, an effect called “asterism”.

Color-Changing Garnet

Color-changing Garnet is an especially rare and valuable member of the garnet group of gemstones. It is highly desired for its distinct ability to change color depending on the type of light source with which it is viewed. It can have several color combinations, especially brown or orange in daylight to a pink or light red in incandescent light.

Varieties of Garnet

There are many forms and varieties of Garnets, categorized in six main mineral types:
ALMANDINE (reddish brown to brown)
ANDRADITE (brown, black or green)
GROSSULAR (colorless, orange or green)
PYROPE (dark red to ruby red)
SPESSARTINE (orange, pink or brown)
Green garnets are most highly prized but are very rare. Emerald green and colorless stones are highly valued, followed by pure red garnets.


The most common crystal shape for garnets is the rhombic dodecahedron, a twelve sided crystal with diamond-shaped (rhombic) faces. This basic shape is the trademark of garnets, for no other crystal shape is so closely associated with a single mineral group like the rhombic dodecahedron is with garnets. Today, the most important sources for garnet are Africa, Sri Lanka, and India.

References to the gemstone date back to 3100 B.C., when the Egyptians used garnets as inlays in jewelry. In ancient Rome, signet rings with carved garnets were used to stamp the wax that secured important documents. Ancient warriors believed that garnets brought victory. The Crusaders used them as protection against wounds and accidents during their journeys. In contrast, Asiatic warriors believed that glowing garnets, used as bullets, inflicted more severe wounds.

As with many precious stones, garnets were once believed to hold medicinal powers. In Medieval times, it protected its wearer against poisons, wounds and bad dreams, and cured depression. Red garnets relieved fever, hemorrhages and inflammatory diseases.

Sources: American Gem Society, Wikipedia and Earth Sky. Images courtesy of Gem Select, Gemological Institute of America and DWCustom Jewelry. Thank you!

Happy Birthday to all January babies!

For one-of-a-kind jewelry designs created with garnet please visit ADORA by Simona.


Adora By Simona, Designer Jewelry, Garnet, Garnet Jewelry, History Of Garnet, January Birthstone, The Stone Of Eternal Friendship, Unique Jewelry

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author avatar ADORA by Simona
Inspired by color and mixing sophisticated style with the simplicity of primary shapes I create earthy yet elegant jewelry designs with an organic approach.

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author avatar GenkiWorld
14th Jan 2015 (#)

wow this was so intresting, at times it is hard to find the true meaning and information about the stone with all the added stuff out there. this is one of my favorites even though i was not born in january, the stone has deep meaning to me.

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author avatar ADORA by Simona
14th Jan 2015 (#)

Thank you for your comment, GenkiWorld! I am very happy you found this post interesting, I am trying my best to provide meaningful information about gemstones through my blog. And yeah, garnet is a truly beautiful and unique stone, one of my favorites as well! :)

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
15th Jan 2015 (#)

Interesting to know details about gemstones - good post - siva

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author avatar ADORA by Simona
15th Jan 2015 (#)

Many thanks for your kind comment, Siva! Once I discovered the world of gemstones and their "secrets" I was hooked. Happy to share my limited knowledge... :)

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author avatar viewgreen
17th Jan 2015 (#)

wow, awesome describe for the gemstones. I recently visit on your site then sure I would love to have a "Blue Lagoon" Swarovsky Cristal. It's wonderful. Thank you for sharing this information. :)

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author avatar ADORA by Simona
17th Jan 2015 (#)

Thank you for your comment, viewgreen! Glad you enjoyed the post and happy to hear that Blue Lagoon caught your attention. It is truly an eye-catcher, more so in "person" than in pictures! Best, Simona

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author avatar SaigonDeManila
17th Jan 2015 (#)

Impressive proipfile and great article to compliment! Feels like i had a walk through in the jewelrysmith world.

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author avatar ADORA by Simona
18th Jan 2015 (#)

SaigonDeManila, thank you for stopping by and for the kind words! Thoroughly enjoy your articles as well! Simona

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