Classic sixling type twin of Rutile crystals epitaxially growing from a Hematite crystal. In very fine condition, this radiating star habit is one of the wonders of the mineral world. These are delicate but not especially fragile, this can be shipped safely.
Spessartine on Microcline
Tongbei, Yunxiao County, Zhangzhou Prefecture
6.2 x 5.2 x 3 CM (cabinet)
Unusually huge and fine Spessartine crystals from this famed locale. Garnets from Tongbei (China) had a huge impact in the mineral world when they first appeared. They are still highly regarded and have become scarce in good quality. This is from the early finds and has the largest complete crystal we have seen, over 2.2 CM across. Normally anything over 1-1.2 CM is considered huge from here. In perfect shape, sawn on the bottom side where removed and with two generations of Spessartine. This is very different from the typical material from this famed locality. Excellent luster, sharpness and a giant crystals. It is impossible to find anything like this now on the market.
Choice crystals of Lorenzenite, a Sodium Titanium Silicate with distinct form up to 1.5 CM. From early finds at Lovozero (Kola Penninsula, Russia). This was in the collection of the Fersman Museum (Moscow) and later in the University of Delaware Museum. Older labels included giving the USSR as country of origin. The largest crystal is well-exposed, it has a nice red-purple color and textbook form. Minor crystals of Aegerine are also present, all in very fine condition.
Fluorite - unusual stalactite form
Yaogangxian Mine, Yizhang County, Chenzhou Pref.
9.8 x 3.7 x 3.2 CM (cabinet)
Stalactite of translucent Fluorite composed of small stepped crystals in stacked clusters. An early and very odd Fluorite from Yaogangxian, certainly a special and maybe unique piece. We have never seen another quite like this despite decades of experience with Yaogangxian. A few years ago there were some other type Stalactites recovered from a single pocket but they were composed of large crystal chains and a different habit altogether. Near the bottom of this piece there seems to be a repair on a crack. The rest of the piece is in perfect condition and for a perfectionist the repair could easily be unglued leaving an unrepaired, pristine (though slightly smaller) piece. A fine addition to any world-wide Fluorite suite or Chinese collection.
Grossular - 'raspberry' Garnet
Sierra de la Cruz, Municipio de Sierra Mojada
8.7 x 5.3 x 4.7 CM (cabinet)
A large and colorful raspberry Garnet from the specimen mining project of Dennis Beals about 12 years ago. This has a dense cluster of Grossular crystals up to 1.4 CM, ranging in color from bright raspberry to a darker red-purple hue. Excellent luster on most crystals. There is some crystals on the outer edges that are broken and show that the core is quite dark to black inside with the outer skin being the red-purple color. This piece has the Garnets very well-exposed and it is a choice example of the find. The area here in Coahuila was a source of pink and greenish garnets as well as brown Vesuvianites known since the 1950 era. For decades the location was incorrectly given as Lago Jaco, which was deliberate misleading to keep the source private. The early finds were usually rather pale but these later Garnets are far more vibrant.
A small slab section of Rhodochrosite stalactite with good red color and complete all around. This shows the radiating crystal structure or flower-like form and not the usual "bullseye". Looks fine on both sides, this is from the famed Capillitas (Argentina) which is the only place in the world where such things are found.
Cavansite with Stilbite
Dhoot Quarry, Wagholi, Pune
5.3 x 5.2 x 2.7 CM (cabinet)
A choice Cavansite with top color and no damage at all from the classic Wagholi locale in Pune (India). For many years we would see a lot of Cavansites at major mineral shows, these were popular due to the often intense color, and quite affordable. Undamaged pieces were much less common and now we understand the quarries are being redeveloped into housing. It seems the end of a great locality, there are no other sources of such quality worldwide. There are still a few fine pieces to be found in the mineral market, though the prices are already going up. This piece is from finds in 2003 and is well above average for quality in this size. The thumb of Cavansite is 3.2 CM tall, perfect and vivid. A choice, colorful and increasingly rare mineral.
A single crystal of Phosgenite from the classic Monteponi Mine, ex Delaware University museum and attributed to the George Kunz collection (No Kunz label but a faded number on the specimen). Most of the Phosgenites from this locale have some type of damage, this one has some edge wear but is mostly complete on all sides, there is a chip on the backside and an old repair to note but still shows the form very well. This has classic flat basal terminations and stepped outer edges on the prism faces. Gemmy areas as well as vivid fluorescence add interest and character. For many years the Monteponi Mines were the world's best source of crystalized Lead secondary minerals like this; they are still prized and respected today.