Thursday, January 01, 2009

January's Birthstone - Garnet

Happy New Year! A brand new year- 2009. Now it will take me 3 months to start getting the date right.

I thought today would be a good day to continue my mini series on gemstones with this month's birthstone- Garnet. You can see the first in the series here. When I'm finished, I will release a little pdf that you can print out and keep with you for future reference.

Garnet receives its name from the latin word " granatus" meaning seed. Garnet is a 7-7.5 on the MOh's hardness scale. It is found worldwide in such places as Australia, Africa, India, and the United States. Garnets come in a variety of colors from reds to orange to lime green. Some names for other varieties of garnets are Almandine, Andradite, Grossular, Imperial, Mandarin, Spessartite, Tsavorite, and Demantoid.

Not only is Garnet the birthstone of January babies, but it is the zodiac birthstone for Capricorns. As a birthstone, it is said to be a guiding and protective gem. It is said to be a cleanser of the body's engeries and heals and intensifies relationships. Garnets are also believed to regenerate the body, remove inhibitions and taboos, and sharpen perceptions of yourself. Garnets are also given at the 2nd and/or 6th wedding anniversaries.

Garnet jewelry has been dated back to the Bronze Age. Early Egyptians used garnets in their jewelry as amulets and buried their dead with garnet jewelry to protect them and light the path for their next journey.

A couple of cool things I bet you didn't know about garnets. A garnet was said to have illuminated Noah's Ark. It is said he used garnets to illuminate the interior and paths of the Ark. A Garnet is also believed to be one of the 12 stones that adorned the breastplate of the high priest Aaron. Those stones were chosen to represent the 12 tribes of Israel then later became our 12 birthstones. It has also been said that King Solomon wore Garnet during battle. Last but not least, Garnets were said to have been used in Asia as bullets or placed in bullets because they had more of a destructive power.

I hope you have enjoyed this look at Garnets and have learned a something new. Come see me tomorrow because it's Phriday Photo Phiesta and have I got an interesting photo for you.


SuZ said...

I love this... what great facts to have!

Craftymoose Crafts said...

Wow! I didn't know half of this stuff! Great info!

bfs said...

My dad will be 88 on January 31. It's really neat to know about his birthstone!

sassy stephanie said...

My daughter is a January. She just got a little sterling birthstone ring for Christmas and she thinks she is the bees knees!

This is so strange. I have not seen you in my Google Reader for awhile and today I have 27 posts from you! Stupid Google Reader.