When most people imagine a garnet, they picture a dark red gemstone but in reality it's a fascinating gem available in a number of different varieties, all with their own unique colors and qualities. The varieties of garnet found in jewelry are almandine, pyrope, rhodolite, spessartite, demantoid, and grossularite (with varieties named tsavorite and hessonite). Continue reading to learn more about this beautiful gem, one that Adel enjoys using in his handcrafted jewelry designs.
The name "garnet" (originally "granat") was actually derived from the Latin word "granatium", which means pomegranate, referring to the resemblance of the garnet's red crystals to pomegranate seeds. There is evidence that garnets were used as far back as 5,000 years to the Bronze Age. The Ancient Greeks and Romans used garnet signet rings to seal important documents. During the dark night, Noah placed a glowing finely cut garnet into a lantern. The lantern, providing light from this red gemstone, then helped him to steer his ark through the night.
Garnet was often believed to be a talisman and protective stone. Many early explorers used garnet to light up the night and protect them as they believed it would bear them from evil and disaster. The availability of this gem significantly increased in the 1500s, when the famous Bohemian garnet deposits were discovered in central Europe. Garnets are now recognized as a popular birthstone for January.
The Tsavorite variety of grossular garnet is one of our favorites. In 1967, Tsavorite was discovered in the Tsavo national park (near the border of Kenya and Tanzania) in East Africa. This is where the greenish gem gets its name. The highest priced garnet on the market today, it also resembles an emerald but is actually 200 times rarer. Typically, Tsavorite garnets are untreated, flawless, and free of inclusions. With its high refractive index, the Tsavorite can range in color from bright yellowish green to an even bluish green. If you are looking for a green stone for a ring, Tsavorite is a much better option than emerald. We love it for its bright, happy color.
Are you interested in adding Tsavorite garnet to your jewelry collection? Shop our selection of Tsavorite jewelry, crafted by hand with the most exquisite garnet gems, selected for their breathtaking green color and overall beauty.