Calcite with Fluorite
Denton Mine, Harris Creek Sub District, Hardin County
6.8 x 4.9 x 3.8 (cabinet)
new year 2021
A southern Illinois classic, a mass of transparent, gemmy Calcite crystals are the sparkling background to some small purple to blue Fluorites. The bright luster of these Calcites are hard to appreciate in photos but in person the visual impact is strong. This choice Denton Mine specimen is from the collection of Les Hitchings which he obtained in 1992, from the last period of mining there which produced some exceptional Calcites.
Blocky habit colorless, transparent crystals of Anglesite with a tiny amount of Sulphide adhering to the edges. In excellent condition there are several complex face modifications seen on close exam and a few inclusions that are likely Galena. The transparent crystals have internal iridescent "rainbows" and the luster is bright and glassy. Anglesite crystals are known from many Lead mines worldwide but only a very few localities have produced such fine large crystals, and Tsumeb is high on the short list. A very fine undamaged and esthetic example of the specie and for this habit.
A classic pseudomorph of Malachite replacing and encrusting an Azurite crystal. The former Azurite shows the original crystal form perfectly, and is perched on a contrasting layer of bright Calcite crystals. No damage and a nice chatoyancy on the wide faces of the crystals. The matrix also has a few areas of Chalcotrichite on the underside but the Malachite is the real focus.
A superb display grade example of the rare and usually unimpressive to ugly mineral. Julgoldite is a Silicate species in the Pumpellyite family, found in Basaltic flows with Zeolites. It is almost never seen in attractive specimens as it is typically just micro crystals, coatings or dark masses. This is by far the best example I have ever seen from any locality, and it has several habits of this specie well-presented on this piece. The Julgoldite forms hairy acicular crystals seen as individuals, sprays and in clusters or balls over 1.6 CM across. Most of the crystals are a translucent green but some are near black and a few in one corner are a bright golden hue. The balls of translucent Chalcedony add a nice contrast as well. A fine addition for any serious collection of Zeolites, Trap species or Indian minerals. The Fe3+ designation is made without testing but presumed correct as all other examples tested from Jalgaon are this and not the Fe2+
A very rich and super esthetic Pyromorphite from the great finds at Daoping in Guanxi, China. Two generations of well-formed Pyros have slightly different hues of green and all have excellent bright luster. The larger crystals are free standing and reach 1.3 CM. Terminations of the larger crystals are both hopper habit and prismatic with the larger being more the cavernous hoppered type. On a few sides of these prisms there are secondary alterations of rare pseudomorphing to a Galena sheath which is the overgrown by a third generation of extra bright green Pyro. This phenomenon is very rare worldwide, but well-known from just a few European locales and ultra rare from China. Overall this is incredible condition, it is even better in person and is an excellent example of the specie and the locality.
Topaz on Microcline with Quartz
Hohenstein Massif, Omaruru District
6.6 x 4.7 x 4.3 CM (cabinet)
new year 2021
Small, perfect, gem clear Topaz crystals are perched on a Microcline crystal that is perched on a Smokey Quartz crystal. This association of species is a classic assemblage and very well-presented in this Erongo specimen. The condition is good, with some contacts and edge roughness on the matrix, the Topaz are fully perfect even under strong magnification. This was excavated by the "small miners" collective on Hohenstien in 2017.
Cuprite - Classic locale and form
Chessy Copper Mine, Chessy-les-Mines, Villefranche, Rhône
1.3 x 1.1 x 1 CM (thumbnail)
new year 2021
A perfect thumbnail crystal that is complete all around and has textbook perfect hoppered faces. The Cuprite is coated with Malachite as is typical from Chessy. This locality is famous, it is one of the oldest and most classic of European mineral localities. This example is unusually perfect, undamaged with no contacts or missing parts. This was in the collection of Terry Szenics who is well known for excellent taste in minerals, especially copper species.
A very clear, colorless Quartz crystal that looks like a Citrine due to it being included by golden Rutile needles. Very close inspection also shows a few inclusions of flat silvery-black Hematite crystals as well. Overall this is in much better condition than we usually see for Rutilated Quartz crystals, however there are some tiny rough spots so this is not for a strict perfectionist. Nevertheless it is hard to find any Rutilated that is this clean and gem clear. Sources in Brazil have been producing very little and anything this good is sold as cutting rough to the Asian market.