Here’s a few distinguishing characteristics you might have noticed:
- Slanted axis: notice that the thin parts of the “o” are at an angle to one another. Contrast that with Georgia, where the thin parts are vertical to one another. This is because Garamond is more strongly influenced by a drawing tool. If you’re drawing an “o” with an angled pen, your “o” is going to look more like a Garamond “o.”
- Small x-height: even at the same type size, notice how much larger Georgia’s “o” looks than Garamond’s. Georgia was designed for the screen (in 1993, by Matthew Carter), and since lower-resolution screens have trouble with type subtleties, having a higher “x-height” (or height of the “x,” as well as many other lower-case letters) allows for more space within the letterform, so the letter can be read more easily. Garamond was designed about 500 years ago, when nobody was thinking about computer screens.
- “Modeled” serifs: Since Garamond is influenced more by a drawing tool, it really shows in the serifs. Look at how much more rounded they are on Garamond, whereas in Georgia, they are much sharper.