The name demantoid is composed of the Middle High German demant, meaning “diamond”, and the ancient Greek – eidos, meaning “appearance” in clear reference to the stone’s characteristic very high adamantine luster and rainbow-colored “fire”, both usually specific to diamonds.
Demantoids were once known as Bobrov garnets as they were first discovered on the right bank of the Bobrovka River in the Central Ural Mountains in 1855. However, it was not until 1871that the magnificent stone was assigned its current name during a sitting of the Russian Imperial Mineralogical Society.
The first person to attribute demantoid to the garnet group was Nils Nordensheld, the Finnish mineralogist, who was appointed as international researcher of the Russian Science Academy in the middle of 19th century. He came across some green crystals that were sent over from the Ural Mountains for a detailed inspection and correctly identified them as a variety of andradite garnet.
Demantoid garnets have a green body color, which varies, depending on the chemical composition of the stone, from a light yellowish-green (similar to peridot) to a deep green, almost the color offine emerald. While the ideal color is a matter of personal taste, specimens with a more intense green are valued more highly although lighter stones display substantially more fire.
(Chapter from the Book “Gemstones. Terra Connoisseur” by Vladyslav Yavorskyy)