Now the festive season is over and we are already into the start of 2019, it is time to prepare for the year ahead. If we are not careful, we can unintentionally forget our friends and loved ones who were born in January. The birthstone for this month is a garnet which has been known to symbolise long lasting friendship and trust, making it the perfect gift for the people closest to you.
Garnet is also said to symbolise a light heart and loyalty, and bringing peace, prosperity and good will to the home. Buying a birthstone for someone close to us is a thoughtful present as it adds such a personal touch. Garnets were originally worn as it was thought that they enhanced bodily strength, endurance and vigor and they were also thought to relieve skin conditions and also regulate the heart and blood.
The name “garnet” comes from the Latin word “Garanatus,” meaning “seedlike,” in reference to a pomegranate. This reference makes sense as small garnets look like the bright red seeds you find inside in a pomegranate. Garnets were found as beads in a necklace worn by a young man in a grave that dates back to 3000 B.C. This is proof of the hardness and durability of the stone.
Contrary to popular belief, not all garnets are red, in fact garnets display the greatest range of colours of any mineral; they come in a range of different colours, or even colourless. Unlike many other gemstones, garnets are not mined underground, but rather found as pebbles in streams.
Garnets range from a 7.0 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale of hardness and are found all over the world, from the Czech Republic, U.S. (Arizona), South Africa, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Myanmar (Burma), Scotland, Switzerland and even Tanzania . Garnets are formed when high temperatures and / or pressure is a factor, and geologists often use garnets as a gauge of the amount of temperature and pressure that was present during their formation.
Not only is garnet this month’s birthstone, it is also the gem stone that celebrates a second wedding anniversary, so for a different and thoughtful gift at any time, a gorgeous garnet could be the perfect solution.