The name garnet was derived from the Latin granatum which means seed or grain. It is a reference to the pomegranate fruit, whose seeds resemble some garnet crystals. Garnet refers to a group of closely related minerals. However, nowadays it has come to describe the dark red variety of this mineral group.
Garnet is not part of any mineral group. The chemical composition and color of every gem in the garnet group is different from each other. This is the reason why it is classified as an independent gem. While its color scale may range from orange to purple, its signature color is crimson red.
Garnets naturally come with their beautiful red color, and unlike other gems, they do not need to be heat treated to reach the desired color. Thanks to this abundance, almost all garnets on the marketplace are probably one-hundred-percent natural.
This alluring crimson gem is the official birthstone of January, and is also called “The Dreamer” or “The Gem of Mercy”.
Garnet has a hardness rating of 6.5 - 7.5 on the Mohs scale, which makes it a durable enough gemstone to be used in rings, necklaces, bracelets, and earrings as long as it is given proper care.
While there is no globally accepted garnet grading system, they may be classified according to their external and internal features, mainly their clarity and color.
A - Decent
The most common garnets are in this category as 60% of them fall into this category. "A" quality garnets have a dark crimson red color, and they are considerably included.
AA - Superior
Garnets in this category roughly make up for 30% percent of all the garnets earth has to offer. "AA" quality garnets have a lighter red color and contain fewer inclusions than "A" quality garnets.
AAA - Finest
Garnets in this category are sort of rare, as they make up for 10% of all the garnets. "AAA" quality garnets are eye-clean, which means that they do not have inclusions that can be seen with a naked eye and they show a medium red color.
AAAA - Prodigious
These marvelous garnets are very rare, in fact, they only make up for a mere 1% of all the garnets in the world. Prodigious quality garnets are inclusion free, and they stand out from the rest with their spectacularly intense red color.