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The gem variety of spessartine garnet is uncommon. lt tends to be midway between spessartine and almandino in

Appearance The “aurora red," orange-red or orange pink color is typical. It has good transparency and considerable luster. It is normally given a mixed, round, or oval cut. The weight does not normally exceed a few carats Gems of about 10 carats are extremely rare and usually of an atypical, rather dark, unattractive color.

Distinctive features The color, single refraction, and luster are useful means of identification, but the physical properties have to be measured to distinguish it, for instance, from some hessonite garnets. Examination of the absorption spectrum can be very useful; where clearly visible, which is not always the case, it is distinctive.

Occurrence Spessartine is extracted from the gem gravels of Sri Lanka and Burma. It is also found in the United States (Virginia and California), Brazil, and Madagascar.

Value its value is a bit higher than pyrope and almandine, about the same as rhodolite. It is not often found on the market.

Simulants and ‘synthetics It is neither imitated nor produced synthetically.

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