The perfect stone for embarking on a new year, garnet, the January birthstone, has long been associated with journeys. Derived from the Latin word “granatus,” which is related to the word “pomegranate,” garnet was named thus due to its resemblance to the deep red, seed-like fruit when in its natural form. In Greek mythology, it is said that the god of the underworld, Hades, gave his lover, Persephone, a pomegranate when she left him. When she ate the pomegranate, she discovered she was bound to return to him for one-third of the year. Thus, it has become traditional to give travelers garnets to ensure a safe journey.
Beautiful faceted garnets set in 14KT yellow gold can be hung or used as a pendant with its special loop, American, 1985. Clifford Baron Gallery
The Crusaders used garnets as protection in their travels, and according to Biblical legend, Noah hung a garnet on his ark to light the way through the long storm. One of the world’s oldest gemstones, evidence of garnets date as far back as the Bronze age, and have always been a popular stone for jewelry, especially in the Victorian era. The garnet is the traditional gift for the 2nd wedding anniversary and a stone given to friends as it also signifies eternal friendship, as well as generally beautiful, warm stone for a cold month.