Sharp replacement of hexagonal Aragonite crystals by native copper. Excellent form, complete on all sides and with classic hexagonal prisms. Slightly hoppered on flat faces, this is formed of two textbook prisms that intersect on one narrow edge. Usually these pseudos are rather crude, it is very special when such sharp detail is preserved.
Lazurite pseudo after Sodalite
Fayzabad, Koksha Valley, Khash-Kuran Wa Munjan District
4.8 x 3.3 x 2.7 CM (miniature)
Late Summer 2018
A brilliant blue crystal of Lazurite nicely perched on a Calcite matrix. This is quite a fine Lazurite but it is in fact much less common, it is a partial pseudomorph of a Sodalite crystal. Both minerals are known to pseudomorph each other but can have similar crystal shapes so it is hard to detect. On this crystal there is some small zones where the brilliant blue is only partly covering the whitish to more pale blue interior. The core of the crystal can be seen and is still Sodalite, This is vividly Fluorescent in those spots but the exterior blue Lazurite has no response. The crystal is up to 2.7 CM across and contrasts perfectly with the matrix. A choice crystal and intense blue pseudo.
Free standing elongated crystals of Cinnabar in a well protected vug lined with small crystals of Quartz and Dolomite. Excellent bright red color and very translucent. The largest crystals have sharp terminations with distinct re-entrant notches, so they are in fact twins. Slender elongated crystals like these are much rarer than the blocky type and since the mines are closed for a few years, any good quality Cinnabar is now very scarce. In fine condition and with bright luster, Chinese Cinnabar crystals have always been respected and desired as the worlds best for the specie.
Bournonite, Quartz and Pyrite
Pachapaqui District, Bolognesi Province
7.2 x 5.4 x 5.2 CM (cabinet)
Late Summer 2018
Two-sided specimen with excellent sharp Bournonites on both sides. All the Bournonites show bright silver luster and twinning that in some crystals has the classic cogswheel habit. The side I consider the "front" or better display side has two main Bournonites that are perfectly formed and undamaged, set off by golden Pyrite and milky Quartz crystals. The "back" side has more nice Bournonites but there is some damage and contacts, (that is why it is the back of course). A few years ago matrix Bournonites of this quality were very rare and expensive when available but both China and Peru then began to produce these and they became very affordable. Now both these sources are not producing.
A superb specimen with gigantic, perfectly formed Wardite crystals. Textbook perfect form and up to 2 CM across these are the best and largest Brazilian Wardites I have ever seen, and are top percentile for the specie worldwide. These are esthetically set on a complex mix of Pegmatitic minerals and Phosphates. Aside from the Quartz and Muscovite crystals the matrix also includes what are identified as Wavelite (radiating sprays and blue green balls) and what seems to be Fairfieldite and Guimaraesite. The main event however is certainly the Wardites which are a cream color and undamaged. Outstanding Phosphate specimen and a killer Wardite.
Anadalusite in Sericite Shist
Cargo Muchacho Mountains, Imperial County
5.7 x 3.9 x 3.1 CM (cabinet)
Late Summer 2018
Something a bit unusual, the main Andalusite crystal is well-formed and over 3.5 CM across. Nice overall composition, the biggest Andalusite is quite well exposed from the Schist. Ex S. Alverson collection, this was collected in 1980, but not at any of the noted mines, just a small prospect. Microscopic exam finds many Hematite crystals and one Kyanite in the matrix as well. A fine, less common California specimen and a nice prismatic crystal of Andalusite.
Fort Wayne. Allen County
4.3 x 3 x 3 CM (miniature)
Late Summer 2018
A pretty mid-western US Fluorite with transparent crystals that are far more clear in person. Overall sharp and lustrous there are some small edge jagged zones that with strong magnification appear to be mostly natural contacts and a few partially recrystallized bruises. One tiny cleave is noted too, so this is not perfect but by naked eye it still looks quite fine, has great color and displays well. Ex Charles Noll collection, vintage 1970 time period. Crystals to 2.5 CM, the matrix is clearly seen through the cubes.
English classic Calcite crystals on a gossan Matrix. Glass clear and lustrous as these are supposed to be. These Egremont Calcites from the West Cumberland Iron fields were mostly being found in the 19th century or earlier, they are highly respected. On this piece there are a few cleaves and a recrystallized old break, this keeps the price lower, but none of these are easily seen on display. Ex Ruth and Andy Palmer, these clear Calcites are only available from the dispersal of old collections.