Sphalerite- gem variety Cleiophane
Ninth of September mine, Madan, Rhodope Mountains
7.9 x 5.5 x 2.7 CM (cabinet)
Worldwide mix summer
Sharp and glasslike gem Sphalerite crystals contrast with the white matrix in an esthetic combination. The Sphalerites are a dark yellow-green best seen when under strong light. The luster is brilliant. From the Madan area of Bulgaria, this zone has produced some extraordinary Sphalerites (and Galenas as well) on occasion. This piece is from a few years ago out of one incredible pocket. Far better than typical specimen with fine 3 dimensional esthetics, there is no damage at all.
Galena with Chalcopyrite and Dolomite
Brushy Creek Mine, Greely, Viburnum Trend District, Reynolds County
5.9 x 4.6 x 4 CM (cabinet)
Worldwide mix summer
Bright silver color Galena in elongated cube form sits on a finger of matrix covered with small Dolomite and Chalcopyrite crystals. This is the sort of Galena that has made the Brushy Creek locality famous, with extra bright luster, attractive form and in fine undamaged condition. Any suite of lead minerals will have at least one good specimen. These are contemporary classics, still very affordable and unlike the look of Galena from any other area in the world.
From an older European collection, these are well formed, fine Chalcopyrites with some complex Galena all dusted with Calcites. The original label lists this as from Rodna, but it is unlike any other example we have seen from the locale, and unlike any of the better known Romanian localities (Cavnic, Turt etc). As often happens with old collections we can not always fully trust the locality information, but if correct this is especially fine for the locality and a significant older Roumanian piece with character. Undamaged. The Chalcopyrites reach 2.6 CM and are textbook sharp.
Calcite- Complex twin
Daye Iron Mine, Edong Mining District, Huangshi Prefecture
7.4 x 5.4 x 4.2 CM (cabinet)
Worldwide mix summer
From the Daye mining area in 2002 before it became a well known mineral locality, this Calcite has a form unlike later finds. The Calcite is almost 6 CM in diameter, transparent (more so than the photos show) and with glassy luster. Some contacts are noted on the back (see the last photo of the back) but overall as seen it is in very fine condition damagewise. Displays well from several angles, we obtained this on one of of earliest trips to China and until recently it was in my personal collection.
Classic Cornish thumbnail specimen of the very desirable Galena after Pyromorphite crystals from Wheal Hope. Small but distinct crystals of Pyromorphite have full changed to Galena but the form remains. Ex John Marshall collection, obtained by him before 1970. These Pseudomorphs are only known from a few spots in the world and all seem to have been found over a century ago. These are especially uncommon from Cornwall, and while to many people are just black and ugly, they are a prize to those who understand these things!
A doubly terminated crystal of Zircon with lustrous faces and classic form. From the Ratnapura district of Sri-Lanka, this is a dark red-brown under strong light but looks black in most conditions. Some well formed growth hillocks and rounded cavities add interest.
The Eisieben mines date back to the end of the 19th century (or more), worked for Copper and Nickel, but from time to time some excellent Selenite was found. This is a choice piece, in pristine condition, with sharp delicate prisms on matrix. In person the transparency is far more impressive.
A very large, vividly fluorescent and nicely zoned Phosgenite crystal dominates the sizable matrix. Other areas of Phosgenite are noted on the piece but the main crystal is 4.6 CM across and presents well. What may be an old repair is noted, if so it is not affected by acetone testing and may be a natural crack. Much of the crystal is transparent to translucent and has the classic flat morphology noted from this ancient locale. Even if repaired (the price assumes this is so and is adjusted) this is a choice example and has a very nice presentation. This could also be trimmed to a killer miniature but that would remove many vugs of smaller crystals so we have left this intact. Ex Ara Dildilian and William Haladyz collections, clearly a very old piece.