Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2005 2:39 pm Posts: 3530 Location: San Francisco Bay Area, CA
Garnets are complicated little buggers, chemically speaking.
Hessonite is a color variety of Grossular garnet and thus in the Ugrandite group. Spessartite is an end-member of the Pyralspite group.
The Gemology project page on garnets has lots of good information. But, in order to keep it simple, think of it this way: the difference between the two is that Hessonite has Calcium and Spessartite has Manganese.
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