featuring mid-2012 mineral finds
from Inner Mongolia
A large, doubly-terminated, highly lustrous, jet-black crystal of ilvaite, 12.3 cm in length, is bisected at one end by another doubly-terminated ilvaite crystal, measuring 10.3 cm in length.At that intersection, where the large crystal splits in halves and continues growth around the smaller crystal it embraces, are a few acicular quartz crystals measuring 1 cm in length. The piece is complete, pristine, a floater all around! It is one of the few larger examples found in such condition, that I am aware of. The ilvaite specimens from China are now considered the best in the world by a long shot. There are many styles that have come from this mine but I think that this "floater pocket" from late 2011 has produced the most elegant examples of any style, from any locality.
A very large, lustrous and partially translucent, olive-green andradite crystal, measuring nearly 6 cm in length, is aesthetically perched high on a matrix of white calcite. The calcite seems to be coating another mineral underneath (not sure what, maybe another calcite) which was a well formed, tabular crystal, 5 cm in length and now draped in white calcite. This is one of the larger good garnets I have yet seen from the locale
Two doubly-terminated, highly lustrous, jet-black ilvaite crystals, to 10.8 cm in length, have intersected at such an angle to form, a "Y" shape. These recent ilvaite crystals from China have superseded those from Dal'negorsk as the world's best. This piece is complete, pristine, a floater all around! It is one of the few larger examples found in such condition, that I am aware of. The ilvaite specimens from China are now considered the best in the world by a long shot. There are many styles that have come from this mine but I think that this "floater pocket" from late 2011 has produced the most elegant examples of any style, from any locality.
Several crystals combine to form this really beautiful cluster of solid chalcopyrite. It is nearly a floater all around, with just some minor contact and a few small bits of damage only. It looks like a solid mass of chacopyrite topped by two lustrous brassy yellow crystals, to 3 cm in length, although those crystals help compose the actual matrix itself as well. This is a very choice chalcopyrite from China, in quality resembling the best of Peruvian material. It is robust, and has excellent color. The detail is very complex, wtih small striations throughout. Collected 2005-12-10th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities.
Intergrown crystals of fluorite, to 3 cm across, exhibit glassy terminal faces and gemmy cores. The fluorites exhibit a rich palette of colors with light aqua and lavender color centers amidst deeper purple rims. They also clearly show the complex stepped growth so prevalent in some fluorite. Collected 2006-5-20th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities.
This is a very aesthetic combo specimen of subtle complexity when you look at it in person. It features a few SHARP , GLASSY and gemmy fluorite crystals, to 3 cm across, that are color-zoned with various blue-green hues and 4 mm-thick edges around a sharp phantom line inside each cube. The centers of the fluorite crystals represent earlier growth, within. Interestig inclusions of small white specks dot the internal phantoms (strontianite? calcite?). . On top of these eye pleasing fluorites, are beautifully situated rosettes of white calcite, like little flowers. Color and textural differences really highlight this specimen. It is pristine save only a small ding on top of the main crystal as shown. It is there, but does not detract unless on close examination, really. Also, the piece could be displayed the other way, upside down to this, if it was a problem in person - either looks just as fine a view. Collected 2007-12-18th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities.
A cute, sculptural piece! Cubes of lustrous and translucent, lilac-colored fluorite, to 2 cm across, are perched in a cluster upon lustrous and translucent, white calcite. A few fluorite crystals exhibit dark lavender color centers or phantoms. An unusual locality piece with nice aesthetics, this looks like it could be from Yaogangxian although the calcite association style is a bit unusual for there. Collected 2006-3-10th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities.
The COLOR on this piece is just the top, most saturated, grape-jelly purple you can ask for in a mineral specimen! Perched aesthetically high on a matrix of sparkling white calcite, quartz and cream-colored dolomite is a single lustrous and translucent, deeply-saturated crystal of fluorite, measuring 2.5 cm across. This crystal also exhibits classic stepped growth complexity on all but the top, apex faces. As an added bonus, there is an equant, brassy yellow pyrite crystal, that measures 1 cm across, at the bottom - just to have more species on one piece.
A highly unusual fluorite from ANY locality, this "snakelike" cluster of intergrown fluorites is a floater (complete all around). This unusually shaped specimen is primarily composed of lustrous and translucent, pastel-green fluorite crystals, to 5 cm across. Much of the surface of the fluorites is covered by a druse of snow white, sparkling quartz, particularly on the back. There is a small cluster of lustrous and translucent, purple-colored apatite crystals, to 7 mm across, perched on the fluorite. I cannot recall seeing such an association , and with such purple apatite, from the other Chinese mines. As an added bonus, there are a few sharp chalcopyrite crystals also present. Collected 2006-5-28th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities.
A deep green fluorite crystal cluster is perched on a thick crust of terminated milky quartz crystals. Between them is a layer of brassy yellow chalcopyrite crystals, to 9 mm across. The fluorite crystals , to 3 cm, exhibit both pastel green and rich green colors that intermingle for a nice visual effect. The fluorite crystals also exhibit classic stepped growth, for interest. BETTER IN PERSON, this ia a VERY rich green evergreen color. Collected 2005-5-16th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities.
Emplaced aesthetically on a quartz/dolomite matrtix is a single, lustrous and translucent, JEWEL of a fluorite crystal! It is an exquisitely color-zoned fluorite crystal, measuring 2 cm across and perfect. The fluorite crystal is colored more than one shade of lavender hue, and clearly exhibits a complicated, intricate stepped growth which makes it sparkle. Colorless quartz crystals and saddle shaped dolomite crystals to 1.5 cm in length are also perched on the matrix for accents. 2011 finds.
An aesthetic combo piece featuring a cluster of lustrous and translucent, pastel-green fluorite cubes, to 2.5 cm across, perched aesthetically on a lustrous, translucent, and colorless quartz crystal. Additionally, there are a couple of brasssy yellow chalcopyrite crystals, to 1.3 cm across. A very unusual Chinese piece that looks like classic old Mexican material from Naica, at first glance! Collected 2004-12-16th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities.
Three, intergrown cubes of lustrous, partially gemmy, color-zoned fluorite to 2.9 cm on an edge, are aesthetically perched high on a plate of lustrous and colorless quartz. The fluorite cubes are nearly colorless at their cores but are a deeply colored lavender at their edges. Collected 2009-3-21th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities.
An elegant and beautiful combo piece from a rare locale! Two lustrous and translucent, colorless quartz crystals to 7.9 cm in length are literally draped with lustrous and translucent, richly purple-colored fluorite crystals to 1.5 cm across. The larger fluorites clearly exhibit the phantoms and the classic stepped growth and microdetail of surface patterning, often seen in fluorite from Elmwood in Tennessee. Collected 2005-5-24th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities. Surprisingly, in a very rare association, there is a 1.5-cm TOPAZ crystal intergrown with and embedded by fluorites, near the base of the specimen.
Perched aesthetically high on its matrix is a lustrous and translucent, pastel-green fluorite octahedron, measuring 3.6 cm in length. It exhibits complex details of secondary growth. Directly under the fluorite crystal are two lustrous, milky quartz crystals, to 1.5 cm in length, which ultimately give way to bright, brassy yellow chalcopyrite crystals underneath . The chalcopyrites reach to 2 cm on a side. This looks for all the world like a classic combo piece from Naica in Mexico, from the 1970s-1980s. Collected 2006-4-10th, and from a prominent and carefully assembled collection of Jiangxi minerals with precise localities.
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