A killer classic form of a "drill bit" twin crystal of Cinnabar stands out well on the Dolomite and Quartz matrix. In great condition, no damage and with bright luster, this glows a ruby red when backlit. The photos here do not have backlighting so the look is a bit darker but shows the twin form clearly. The Tongren Mine was a great locality for many years but is no longer producing. This piece is far better than average with a much larger than average crystal and very choice esthetics. At one time before China was opened for export of minerals a top Cinnabar like this was nearly impossible to obtain and close to priceless, being only available from museum collections. One of the great prizes in the mineral world, these are by far the best Cinnabars ever found and this is a super example.
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.
Tongren Mine, Wanshan District, Tongren Prefecture
5.8 x 5.5 x 4.4 CM (cabinet)
Post Tucson 2015
Twinned "drill bit" habit Cinnabar crystals on Quartz matrix with some Dolomite. A Chinese classic, for over a century Cinnabar was the only Chinese mineral seen in the western world. These were prized specimens in top collections and were the worlds best examples of the specie. Things have changed and these are no longer priceless but they are still quite fine and this habit is the most desired. Crystals to 1.8 CM most of which are fully perfect however a small one has a backside cleave not seen on display. The dark color and habit are typical of older material that is not like any of the recent finds.