The distinctive "pineapple" style Calcite from Shangbao came out sporadically in the 2000-2008 era, this is a very choice example of the habit. Set on a matrix of sparkling Quartz the addition of a few scattered purple Fluorites adds extra contrast. In fine condition as seen, the terminations of the Calcites are transparent and the body of the prism is more milky, all with the "pineapple color". Top Shangbao Fluorites are now regarded as some of the worlds best (and most expensive). 15 years ago at the mine the Calcites were more expensive from the miners than Fluorites because they were more rare and hard to extract intact. Times change.
Stibnite- tabular crystals
7.6 x 6.2 x 3.4 CM (cabinet)
Choice old Cavnic Stibnite with the rare type of flattened crystals. Sharp and clean, fine metallic luster and very three dimensional. These mines are closed and specimens of this quality are not often available. Even more impressive in person.
The classic habit of saddle shape Dolomite crystals completely replaced by sparkling smithsonite. The matrix is also nearly all Smithsonite and mostly composed of the rare red-orange color but also has zones of the more typical yellow. A long running debate concerns the color being caused by either Cadmium or Greenockite inclusions. To me it is a distinction without a difference, Greenockite is simply Cadmium Sulfide and so that Cadmium is ultimately the source for the color. In good condition, only a few very minor abrasions can be seen, the Dolomite saddles are quite large and stand well above the matrix.
Azurite -Spherical with Malachite
Morenci Mine, Copper Mt. District, Shannon Mts., Greenlee County
8.6 x 5.9 x 3.8 CM (cabinet)
Brilliant blue ball form Azurites sit on a contrasting gossan matrix with a few areas of Malachite. Choice old specimen ex Warren Johannson collection. Warrens notes give the locality as Bisbee and he obtained it in 1937. It is very likely from nearby Morenci as this habit is noted there, and many Morenci pieces ended up with Bisbee labels. Some additional balls are on the backside, but the display side shown is the best for presentation. The soft matrix has been stabilized, the luster is very bright and the color electric blue.
Malachite Slice of stalactitic nodule
Katanga, Central Area, Katanga Copper zone
Democratic Republic of Congo (Zaire)
5.4 x 4.5 x .5 CM (small cabinet/ large miniature)
Sharp and colorful pattern is well presented on both sides of this cross section of Malachite. Good polish and fine contrast in the banding that is "cauliflower" in form. This sort of quality slice was at one time more common but now is quite scarce. A modern classic.
Fluorite- water clear green cubes
Xianghuapu Mine, Linwu County, Chenzhou Prefecture
8.4 x 6.3 x 4 CM (cabinet)
From the finds at Xianghuapu in 2006, a super sharp and fully transparent cluster of Fluorite with bright luster. We obtained this back then at the mine, we selected from thousands of pieces looking for top quality and this was of that calibre. We sold all those specimens long ago but this one is back and it is nothing like the average pieces that flooded out later on. Now that the mining is closed up this sort of specimen is quite treasured. In fine condition, you can read through the Fluorites, which makes them difficult to photograph well enough to be fully appreciated. The main cube is 5.5 CM diagonal and is like green glass.
Vivianite with Muscovite - rare locale
Cigana Mine, Conelheiro Pena, Doce Valley
5.4 x 3.7 x 2.6 CM (small cabinet/ large miniature)
A choice and rare Brazillian Vivianite from a pegmatite famed for interesting and rare Phosphates. In excellent condition, sizable for the locale and translucent to transparent with a blue green color. The main rosette cluster is over 5 CM tall and the associated Muscovite is significant, this was notable for this one time find in 2007. Pegmatite Vivianites are almost never this large or good since most Vivs are found in Sulfide mines. This discovery was significantly different.
Emerald with Quartz crystals
Mina Amarillial, Cosquez, Municipio de Muzo
4.2 x 2.2 x 1.9 CM (miniature)
Light to mint green Beryl (Emerald) crystals make up most of this specimen with only a thin shard of matrix showing on one edge. Crystallized Beryla are on all sides, almost a floater. The Quartz prisms are sharp and clear contrasting with the Beryl. Crystallized quartz is rare in Colombian Emerald specimens, much more typical is Calcite or Dolomite. This is from a little known spot in the famed Boyaca region. In Colombia only 2 or 3 mines have ever produced Quartz crystals intergrown with Emerald. There are some chipped or contacted crystals but also many perfect, sharp Hexagons with good transparency and luster.