Garnet means grain or seed-like. This name most likely evolved from the ancient jewelry that used clusters of tiny red garnets that resembled pomegranate seeds. (Pomegranate is malum granatum in Latin.) The garnet group includes almandine, andradite, grossular, pyrope (now popularly called rhodolite), spessartine and uvarovite. 

The use of garnet dates to at least 3100 B.C.E. in Egypt where it was used in jewelry and made into beads. Early mentions of garnet come from The Bible. Carbuncle was another name for garnet (as well as ruby) which was one of the twelve stones in the breastplate of Aaron. Noah was said to guide the ark at night with a garnet lantern. The almandine variety has been widely used since the classical era of Greece.

For centuries garnets were carried by travelers to protect them from accidents. Ancient Persians considered it a “royal stone” and carved it with images of their kings. In Arizona, tiny granules of this gemstone are called anthill garnets because ants push it to the surface while building their tunnels. Garnet saw its first industrial use in 1878 in the United States as a coating for sandpaper.
Like alexandrite, some garnets change color according to the light in which they are viewed. Although rare, there are both four and six rayed star garnets. This gemstone occurs in every color but blue. Some garnets are mistakenly called Arizona ruby, Ceylon ruby and Ural emerald.
Garnet symbolizes faith, devotion and truth. It strengthens personal power and helps bring victory/success. Garnet aids in the release of kundalini energy and sparks creativity. Garnets tend to have strong supportive energy. This gemstone fosters confidence and success.
Color(s) - Almandite – red, orange-red with brown, purple-red
Andradite – black, green, yellow
Demantoid – green, yellow-green
Grossularite – brown, green, orange-yellow, white, yellow
Hessonite – range of orange to brown
Malaya – orange, red-orange, yellow-orange
Melanite – black
Pyrope – red, orange-red, purple-red; all quite dark
Rhodolite – purple, red-purple
Spessarite – orange-brown, red-orange, yellow, yellow-brown
Mandarin – vibrant orange
Tsavorite – bright, dark green
Uvarovite – range of greens
Associations - Aquarius, Capricorn, Leo, Virgo; brow and crown chakras; Mars, Pluto; yang
Uses - spirituality; personal journey/success; partnership; travel; personal power to bring victory