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January Birthstone is Garnet

If it were up to us, every child would be graced early on with a garnet, no matter what month they were born in.  After all, what more could we wish for our children as they start out on life’s journey than the gifts bestowed by the legendary “Gem of Faith”—eternal happiness, health and wealth?

Although we have to admit: it is a little odd that a gemstone with such an exalted legend derived its name from the lowly pomegranate seed. Nonetheless, as far back as 3100 BC, garnet jewelry was worn by the great and mighty, and by the not so great as well. It was hugely popular in ancient Rome, and was believed to bring peace and tranquility to the wearer.

The garnet is one of a group of silicate minerals. Its ability to transmit and refract light varies greatly with the more opaque stones used as abrasives. Garnet’s radiance is categorized as vitreous= glass-like, or resinous=amber-like. Red garnets are the most common, but the stone can show a spectrum of colors owing to impurities like iron, manganese and aluminum. The garnet is a super tough stone that does not scratch or break easily and can be expected to retain its brilliance for decades.

Categories: Birthstones, garnet, This month's birth stone