A choice old Yaogangxian specimen with fantastic contrast. Purple phantom Fluorites in a cluster set like jewels on matrix, the largest crystal about 2.5 CM diameter. Transparent to translucent Fluorites with a glassy to waxy luster, these look fine from just about any angle. In fine condition overall, by naked eye there is no visible damage, just some minor rough spots. With a good loupe some small bruises are seen, this is not distracting and is lost in the bigger context. The color ranges from the "grape purple" phantoms to a lighter violet-blue in the crystal bodies, glows great if backlit. This is 2006 vintage, from the "golden years" for Fluorites at Yaogangxian.
Dolomite - iridescent
3 x 2.4 x 2.3 CM (small miniature/ large thumbnail (toenail))
An unusual and attractive thumbnail of Dolomite crystals from Tsumeb with iridescent sheen. An older piece originally labelled "Cobaltoan Dolomite, Tsumeb SWA", however, this does not look at all like the usual Cobalt coloring and doubt the accuracy of that. This is however unusual looking for Tsumeb the crystals are sharp, slightly curved and have reddish-purple highlights.
Kyanite - radiating crystals
Barra do Salinas Mining District, Coronel Murta
11.7 x 5.1 x 3.6 CM (cabinet)
A radiating cluster of slender Kyanite crystals with rich deep blue color. A few tiny bits of Quartz are seen between some of the blades but this is nearly all Kyanite. The crystals are all translucent to somewhat transparent and with backlight they glow very well. There are two main types of terminations on the crystals including tapered and chisel tips. These delicate blades are held by the remaining Quartz and each other which helps keep the spray stable enough for gentle handling and shipping. More esthetic in person, this is a choice cabinet-sized Kyanite with fine display impact.
Tephorite - crystalized with Willemite etc.
Franklin Mine, Franklin Mining District, Sussex County
3.4 x 2.6 x 1.7 CM (small miniature/ large thumbnail (toenail))
A Franklin, New Jersey classic, a mass of Tephorite crystals with green Willemite crystals and some small areas of what seems to be Hodgkinsonite and Friedelite. This is an old specimen that was for many years in several European collections, those labels are included. Tephroite in massive form is not very rare at Franklin, but the tiny, sharp and gemmy crystals are quite rare and not often available.
Mibladen Mine, Upper Moulouya lead district, Midelt, Khenifra Province
4 x 2.4 x 2.7 CM (miniature)
Vanadinite crystals with both brilliantly lustrous red faces and some faces that are a mustard color. The form and esthetics are choice and looks fine from several angles. Vanadinite from Morocco has been rather plentiful for the past few years and the costs are still reasonable for such an attractive specie.
A complex mix of sharp gemmy Apatites with Quartz crystals that are in turn covered with small Siderites and a sprinkle of Pyrite. From the famed Panasqueira Mine, this is both esthetic and has an unusual presentation. The Apatite (Fluorapatite) is vividly fluorescent and in fine condition.
Barite (Baryte) on Calcite
Elk Creek, Dalzell, Meade County
6.4 x 5.9 x 5.4 CM (cabinet)
Gemmy, very sharp amber color Barites rise from the bed of small Calcite crystals covering the face of this matrix. From the classic Elk Creek locality these Barites are distinctive and unlike any others worldwide. This locality has been sporadically productive for decades and these specimens are one of the best values in esthetic USA minerals.
A superb vintage specimen. A jewel-like Rutile crystal (twinned) is set in a cluster of Kyanite blades that are coated with reddish Hematite and a bit of Goethite. This comes with an F. Pisani label, the famed Paris mineral dealer, vintage 1870's but possibly much older. The rutile is brilliantly lustrous and perfect on all sides. The remarkable Rutile of Graves Mountain was highly desired by European collectors of the late 1800's who had the means to purchase the very best specimens. It is hard to appreciate the brilliant luster of this Rutile in photos, this is far beyond any typical specimen from here.