An extremely large (over 3-1/2 inches) single compound crystal of Azurite is partly altered to a silky green Malachite, yet still has large areas of deep blue. Somewhat blocky and crude but with strong and clear form this is an impressive piece and one of the largest single crystal psudos that have come from this prolific location. Esthetic and with strong display presence, this was mined in 2011. A very good value.
Andradite with Calcite
N'chwaning Mine, Kalahari Fields, Kuruman
Northern Cape Province,
2.8 x 2.5 x 1.4 CM (thumbnail)
An unusually good, sizable crystal aggregate of Kalihari Andradite Garnet. The great NChwaning mine is famous for its red colored minerals, especially the Rhodochrosites. Many other less colorful species from here are dusted with tiny bright red Andradites, typically micro crystals. This piece shows well formed distinct and colorful crystals very sizable not like what is usually seen. In excellent condition.
Realgar in and on Calcite
Shimen (Jiepiayu) Mine, Shimen County, Changde Prefecture
7 x 5.5 x 4.8 CM (cabinet)
A very attractive bright specimen that has become sort of a modern classic from the Realgar mine at Shimen. The calcite is milky white to clear yellow and glassy, while the Realgar is brilliant red. This is clearly seen inside the Calcites and extending to the surface in sharp form. In good condition with some bruising that is not distracting, specimen like this one are a great value for building collections with attractive pieces that are fine yet affordable.
Cerussite (gemmy V twins)
stock #Alec 12-072
Otavi-Bergland district, Oshikoto,
5.2 x 4 x 2.1 CM (small cabinet/ large miniature)
Tsumeb Cerussite can be incredible, but its usually very damaged or crazy expensive. This is a far better than average piece (but not perfect with inspection) with glassy luster, elegant striations, and is formed by 2 "V" twins that abut each other. The main large crystals are in good undamaged condition, there is chipping on the bottom and end of the small crystals that is seen. The chipping is not glaring, only noted if you look carefully. The clarity is gem grade and very sharp, with a warm smokey color. Not perfect, but not 8,000.00$ either!
Gratonite (rare Lead-As Sufosalt)
Excelsior Mine, Cerro de Pasco, Pasco Province
5.4 x 3.2 x 2 CM (small cabinet/large miniature)
Gratonite when available is usually in thumbnail sized pieces. This is a more sizable piece and well crystallized. The best were found over 50 years ago and Pasco is the only source for fine specimens. Branching crystal aggregates to 2.5 CM cover most of a sulfide matrix, composed of 3-5mm sized individuals. The Gratonite has the dull to slightly lustrous lead-silver color that is classic for these.
Fluorite (pink and clear) on Quartz
Val Cristallina (Cristallina Valley)
4.6 x 3.4 x 1.5 CM (miniature)
A rare old piece (pre-war) from a classic alpine cleft locale, this is rather different from more recent finds. The matrix is a series of parallel quartz crystals covered with a druse of sparkling clear Flourite octahedra that are included by greenish chlorite. There are six bigger pale pink Fluorites scattered on the face, the largest 1.4 CM. Undamaged by naked eye, even at 20x magnification there is almost no damage to find. A relatively affordable and rather different Alpine Fluorite specimen.
Scorodite on Pyrite
Guangxi Autonomous Region,
3.1 x 2.6 x 2.5 CM (small miniature/ large thumbnail (toenail))
At first glance this looks like a mass of pyrite with a little bright blue Scorodite crystal. With closer examination it is nearly all Scorodite with a coating of pyrite. The bulk of the "matrix" is yellow, brown and blue- green Scorodite crystals up to 1.6 CM. Everything is covered with sparkling crystals of Pyrite that hide most of the underlying crystals. In undamaged condition, this is from the one time find at Henzoh about 5 years ago. There have not been more found since then. A very good value for one of these!
An intense red crystal 3 CM across sits on a matrix of Galena. Well exposed, typically rounded and crude but with distinct form with many areas of transparency. The front side displays well with no noticeable damage, there is cleaving on the backside that is not visible. The galena forms some selective coatings and inclusions as is usual for the locality, this adds a nice contrast. Better in person, a good example from this classic locale, likely mined over 60 years ago. Now quite rare or expensive on the market.