January's Birthstone

Sandra Jordan | 01 January, 2022

            January's Birthstone

For all of those with an January birthday, your birthstone is Garnet. Garnet name originates from the medieval Latin granatus, which means "pomegranate," in reference to the similar deep red colour in garnet.

As prized possessions for the afterlife, red garnet necklaces were entombed with the mummified bodies of Egypt's pharaohs thousands of years ago. During ancient Rome, signet rings adorned with garnets were used to secure important documents with wax.

Red garnets have a long history, but modern in the modern gem world you can pick from a rich palette of colours such as greens, oranges, deeply saturated purply-reds and even some blue. Red garnet is one of the most common and popular colour. A green garnet is also known as tsavorite and is rare as it needs a rare rock, chemistry and changes to the conditions to form it.

The demantoid garnet is a rare and famous green garnet, spessartine (spessarite) is an orange garnet, and rhodolite is a beautiful purple-red garnet. In some cases, garnets can even exhibit the same colour-change phenomenon as alexandrite, a rare gemstone.

Garnet varies in hardness from 6.5 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale. Compared to rubies, sapphires, and diamonds, this birthstone is more prone to damage. Garnets aren't ideal for everyday wear, but they are ideal for earrings, brooches, and pendants. Keeping garnet jewellery in a safe place is important. You can scratch it by rubbing it against harder gems, such as diamonds, rubies, and sapphires. In turn, garnet can scratch softer gems, such as opals and pearls.



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