Garnet is a plentiful stone, most commonly found in a deep crimson and prized over the centuries as a symbol of affection.
Named after the Latin word for pomegranate seed (granatus), garnet is a stone steeped in legend. It has been a popular adornment for pharaohs and nobility. Noah’s ark was thought to have a garnet lantern to help guide its way, and Plato reputedly had his likeness carved in a garnet.
Because of its color, garnet is associated with blood and was thought to encourage good circulation. However, garnets come in a range of colors, including vibrant orange, purple, and green.
While they’ve enjoyed popularity for thousands of years, garnets were especially beloved in the 1500s through the 1800s when a huge deposit was discovered in Bohemia, now a region in the Czech Republic.
Gemstones have been imbued with spiritual meaning for eons, dating back to the breastplate of Aaron that contained 12 gemstones representing the signs of the zodiac and the tribes of Israel. The modern birthstone list was established by the National Association of Jewelers in 1912, with a few updates over the years.