Monday, June 7, 2010

Mozambique Garnet

Gemstone:
Mozambique Garnet

Birthstone Month:
Garnet is the gemstone associated with the month of January.

Zodiac:
Garnet is associated with the zodiac sign Aquarius.

Chemical Symbol:
Fe3Al2(SiO4)3

Chemical Make-up:
Mozambique Garnet has a chemical composition averaging a 1:1 mixture of Pyrope and Almandite.

History & Lore:
The name Garnet comes from the Latin word granatium which means “pomegranate”. Many believe that Garnet was likened to the the pomegranate because its coloration is similar to that of the seeds of the fruit.

It is believed that Noah used a huge Garnet to illuminate the night to help steer his ark to safety. Garnets have also been used by many explorers and travelers as it is believed to protect the wearer when journeying far from home.
Garnets have also been set in shields, armor, and buckles by crusaders for it is believed that it gives protection from wounds & stops bleeding. Many native tribes from North, Central, and South America wore Garnets to ward off evil influences and spirits.

The Hunzas used Garnet bullets to fend off the British troops during their quarrel of 1982, believing that it was stronger and more deadly then lead.

Garnet is said to be the stone of romantic love and passion, enhancing sensuality, sexuality, and intimacy. It is said to awaken creativity, positive energy, and self-confidence, and can bring success to one's career or business. Garnets have been thought to treat infectious diseases, blood poisoning, and heart and lung diseases. It is also a protective stone which is effective for protection from evil and nightmares and one that can be used for spiritual healing. Whilst Garnet is primarily associated with the root chakra, it is also effective at opening other chakras, depending upon the color of the stone in question.

Availability:
Mozambique Garnet is readily available and priced moderately.

Sources:
The sole source of Mozambique Garnet is the East African Nation of Mozambique.

Evaluation:
Mozambique Garnet is rated at 7 - 7.5 on the Moh's Scale of Hardness, making it durable and well-suited for virtually all jewelry purposes. The Garnet is a popular gemstone choice the world over because it is a natural, untreated gemstone that is generally affordable. Mozambique Garnet is a mixture of Pyrope and Almandine, similar in color to Rhodolite Garnet, but exhibiting a slightly darker color of red. In addition to it's dark red color, Mozambique Garnet can also be found in hues of orange-red and a purple-red.

Eye-clean Mozambique Garnet gemstones with strong color saturation and at larger sizes will naturally be at the pinnacle of the value spectrum.

Common Cuts:
Mozambique Garnet is usually cut into the shape / cut that will show the least amount of color darkness. The shapes most effective for doing this are Cabochons, Cushion, Oval and Round.

Routine Enhancements:
There are no known treatments for Mozambique Garnet.

Care & Cleaning:
A Garnet can be cleaned using warm, soapy water and a soft brush. An ultrasonic cleaner is safe for most Garnets but not for all, so should be used with caution. Garnet should be kept away from chemicals that will cause it to erode such as hydrofluoric acid. Garnet should also be kept away from drastic temperature changes as this may cause fracturing.

Always store your Mozambique Garnet jewelry in a fabric-lined box, away from other jewelry in order to avoid scratching / damage.

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