Outstanding Ilvaite specimens have been produced from Serifos Island, which is also famous for Quartz with Hedenbergite as well as Andradites. This hugely impressive, 360-degree small cab features a parallel-growth cluster of brown to black Ilvaite prisms with sharp, chisel terminations and moderate luster. The largest of the crystals is a full 2.9 cm across. This piece reminds me of the columnar ... Read more
Neue Hoffnung Gottes Mine, Braunsdorf, Freiberg, Saxony, Germany (TL)
Miniature, 5.2 x 3.9 x 3.1 cm
This sparkly matrix specimen shows off nicely defined, textbook-sharp Miargyrite crystals from the Neue Hoffnung Gottes Mine, the Type Locality. The lustrous to matte, gray-black Miargyrite crystals to 5 mm are scattered on a drusy Quartz matrix, and are attractive for what they are. This old-time miniature from Freiberg has outstanding provenance, and any quality specimen from here is hard to fin... Read more
Cariboo Gold Quartz Mine, Wells, British Columbia, Canada
Miniature, 3.5 x 3.2 x 1.5 cm
The Cariboo Gold Mine is well-known for fine specimens of Cosalite, an uncommon Pb-Bi sulfosalt. The bright, silver-metallic lathes of Cosalite reach up to at least 8 mm, and they artistically fan and cluster on the milky Quartz. There are a few blebs of gold attached to the Cosalite. Excellent material for the mine. This piece was actually collected in 1952 during a tour with the mine geologist, ... Read more
Excellent cluster of vitreous to pearly, euhedral crystals of Fluorapatite, on Quartz matrix. The largest crystal is 1.3 cm across, lustrous, and doubly-terminated. This is a classic old European locality, dating back hundreds of years. Crystals of such size, color, and aesthetics are extremely hard to obtain and only come out of old collections. Acquired from a "private sale" in 1966.
Herodsfoot Mine, Lanreath, Liskeard District, Cornwall, England, UK
Cabinet, 10.3 x 6.0 x 3.8 cm
Sharp Tetrahedrite crystals coated with bright, golden, iridescent Chalcopyrite are venerable classics from the famous Herodsfoot Mine. The Chalcopyrites range up to 1.3 cm, and many of them are sharp. These outstanding combination crystals are associated with lustrous, metallic-gray, modified Galena cuboctahedrons for a highly unusual contrast, and massive Quartz as well as quartz replacing thick... Read more
Gopfersgrun, Wunsiedel, Fichtelgebirge, Bavaria, Germany
Small Cabinet, 5.8 x 5.7 x 3.0 cm
One of the most surprising pseudomorphs that one can imagine are the Talc after Quartz specimens from Germany. The softest mineral has replaced one of the hardest minerals - crazy! This matrix specimen contains numerous well-formed Quartz crystals, up to 1.4 cm across, that have been altered to tan or brown Talc. The luster and definition of these sharp pseudos are very good, and the overall condi... Read more
This rich miniature, with a matrix association of Quartz, is an excellent reference specimen for this very rare silver telluride species. The Hessites range up to 2-3 mm, and several are very well formed with entirely different crystal shapes. The dark grey crystals have a metallic luster with a mostly matte finish. Hessite specimens reach their worldwide zenith from the Botes area, and in reality... Read more
Pink fluorites from the Swiss Alps have been treasured classics for over a century, and this attractive miniature carries on the tradition. Here we have two mostly complete, rich pink octahedra on a matrix of classic Swiss granite and granular Quartz. The Fluorites are translucent with a silky luster, and are an attractive deep pink. The larger Fluorite octahedron reaches 1.4 cm on edge. Classic a... Read more
Mt. Cervandone area, Devero Alp, Antigorio Valley, Piedmont, Italy
Miniature, 4.1 x 2.7 x 1.7 cm
The Piedmont region of Italy, right at the Swiss border, has produced fine alpine minerals for hundreds of years, and this matrix Cafarsite (calcium, titanium, iron, and manganese arsenate) specimen is no exception. It features a single Cafarsite that is sharp, rusty-brown, and partially altered. The modified octahedron measures an impressive 1.4 cm on edge. Associated with this excellent Cafarsit... Read more
Eagles Nest golds are justifiably famous among collectors for their generally fine display aesthetic, and to get larger pieces with some volume of matrix that still show good golds crystallization, compared to larger matrix gold from most other localtions. A rare, larger specimen in this price range, with beautiful clusters on matrix, and a fine display piece, this specimen shows off two undulatin... Read more
Murray Mine, Jerritt Canyon, Elko County, Nevada, USA
Cabinet, 12.5 x 9.1 x 6.8 cm
USA-origin stibnite clusters of any size and significance are exceedingly rare and hard to find for sale. This is a significant large cluster, that also happens to be beautiful. It is a large specimen with crystals to 7 cm shooting off of a heavy ore matrix, and they are accented/decorated by small crystals of sparkling white quartz and barite that really make the piece something more special. We ... Read more
Stunning luster and grape jelly color mark the best of these classic USA quartz specimens. This piece is typical of JXR Mine, with a closely packed "flower" of crystals sharing a common base, and forming a flower that often breaks off the matrix in the mine. It is nearly complete all around, with just a few trivial dings (3 or 4, or it would be 3x the price, I must say). It really does have the to... Read more
Huanggang Mine, Hexigten, Ulanhad (Chifeng), Inner Mongolia, China
Small Cabinet, 6.6 x 3.8 x 2.7 cm
Helvite from the Huanggang mining complex has really redefined the species, and standards for what collectors can expect. Large, pointy crystals of pseudo-triangular shapes are all over the market and I have also had many in the past. These flooded the market from 2012-2015 and then tapered off, with few being found anymore. However, this was somewhat of an oddity, which came out of a straggler po... Read more
Shangbao Mine, Leiyang County, Hunan Province, China
Miniature, 5.4 x 2.9 x 2.3 cm
A stunning, simple piece with excellent geometry and contrasts, this matrix plate of crystallized dolomite and quartz hosts a 2 cm crystal of sparkling purple fluorite, featuring a sharp 2 cm modified cuboctohedron with a sharp and deeper purple cubic crystal phantom within. One buys these first and foremost for the colorful and complexly modified fluorite crystals. The elegant phantoms of multipl... Read more
Yaogangxian Mine, Yizhang Co., Chenzhou Pref., Hunan Province, China
Small Cabinet, 5.6 x 3.0 x 2.3 cm
Intense pastel green fluorite from Yaogangxian is one of the more rare and desired colors, and here we have a complex cluster of intergrown cubic fluorite grown on a stalk of quartz. The fluorite measures 2.5 cm across and is extraordinarily gemmy and lustrous and glassy! Found in 2016.
A very rare example of a highly unusual replacement of anhydrite by peach-colored quartz, from a onetime find. I see almost none for sale anymore, and the only ones I have seen for sale in years seem travceable only to a small lot that collector/dealer Les Presmyk hoarded long ago, as this one! This is a particularly nice display piece, large miniature or small small cabinet sized.
Smoky Hawk claim, Crystal Peak area, Teller Co., Colorado, USA
Small Cabinet, 7.2 x 7.0 x 5.6 cm
A classic, balanced combination of the big three minerals from this locality, all in unusual aesthetic balance: Amazonite, Smoky Quartz, and both of them nestled atop a ball of white cleavelandite. Small white quartz shards add an interesting accent, as well. This specimen is an old piece, not through a modern lab. It can probably be "upgraded" a bit through boiling acid and chemistry, but I like ... Read more
Black Rock Mine, near Kuruman, Cape Province, South Africa
Miniature, 4.5 x 3.1 x 2.4 cm
For some reason, a number of really unusual cast pseudomorphs have come my way recently. This is another one, featuirng gorgeous sparkling quartz, cast on and coating calcites that are now vanished and gone by natural processes within the pocket. The fact that such fragile hollow casts can survive the earth for millions of years (tens of millions!), and the mining, and 40 years out of the ground s... Read more
Mundo Nuevo Mine, Huamachuco, La Libertad Dept., Peru
Miniature, 5.6 x 3.0 x 2.1 cm
A highly unusual cast pseudomorph, from a small pocket found probably around 2013, this is a cast of sparkly transparent topaz crystals that formed over a large augelite! Small quartz crystals inside help give it strength and also act as a pedestal at the base. I have never seen anything like these before, and only was able to buy a handful at the time, from what Dr Jaroslav Hyrsl had purchased in... Read more
It looks like opal, but it is not! These famous "fire agates," at their best, have all the flash of opals and are often confused with opal. They actually are formed by a thin layer of limonite covered in hard, transparent quartz, which is then polished to reveal the color. The good ones are quite rare; they are sometimes used in jewelry, though very hard to work with, so not many jewelers or lapid... Read more
A huge and very rich, museum-sized specimen of micro-crystallized yellow Tsumcorite (Type Locality) perched on small crystals of Quartz. Tsumcorite is a lead, zinc, iron arsenate and is named after the Tsumeb (Tsum) Corporation (Cor) Mine. The sparkly brownish-yellow Tsumcorite is one of the signature rare-mineral species for which the Tsumeb Mine is renowned and also the TYPE LOCALITY. The tiny T... Read more
This surprisingly large, well-terminated 4.5 cm Parisite-Ce crystal sits perfectly on a cluster of Microcline! Parisite is very rare for this famous, important REE-rich locale. The cream-colored Parisite is well-formed, in good condition, and exceptional for its size from any location, actually. The numerous, gray-white Microclines are euhedral, range up to 1.7 cm, and they have fantastic red fluo... Read more
Allenheads Mine, East Allendale, North Pennines, Northumberland, England, UK
Miniature, 4.1 x 3.8 x 3.2 cm
The term 'classic' certainly applies to the famous interpenetration Fluorite twins from England, including those from this well-known North Pennines mine (formerly named the Beaumont Mine). These lustrous and gemmy Fluorites have good purple color, and sparkly preferential coatings of lustrous Quartz crystals. The exemplary, large crystal is 2.7 cm, and it is zoned (evident when you look at the in... Read more
Bright, eye-catching specimen thoroughly dominated, and deservedly so, by a large, doubly-terminated Quartz crystal. This 3.3 cm crystal is so gemmy and lustrous that one can't help but think 'Herkimer Diamond' when looking at it. The flattened, translucent Quartz crystals are preferentially dusted by tiny Chalcopyrite crystals, which add a nice touch to the already good aesthetics. Unusual for lo... Read more
A fine Neudorf Galena specimen like this, with Siderites, would have been considered one of the top "holy grails" of sophisticated collectors of previous generations, and they should still be considered as such today, as well. All major collections had "a Neudorf" or desired to have one. Pieces of size and quality were always uncommon and this pristine and aesthetic piece meets both ancient and mo... Read more
Brilliantly colorful and lustrous Chalcopyrites grow en masse on this combination piece from this classic locality. The Chalcopyrites, which average 5-8 mm in size, have a natural luster that is so metallic and so bright it looks chemically induced (but is not). The colors range from brassy gold to silver, with flashes of red and purple. There are numerous faces and edges visible, and the Chalcopr... Read more
Herodsfoot Mine, Lanreath, Liskeard District, Cornwall, England, UK
Small Cabinet, 6.9 x 6.7 x 5.2 cm
Recovered in the late 1850s-1875, old-time Herodsfoot Bournonites are a worldwide classic. This showy and excellent specimen features lustrous, gunmetal-gray Bournonite cogwheels partially coated with glassy, textbook, dipyramidal Quartz crystals (typical for Herodsfoot). The Bournonites have a really nice iridescence - a natural, ancient patina. The striking cogwheel on the end is 2.8 cm across, ... Read more
Hasavarka, Prepolar Ural, Komi Republic, Northern Region, Russia
Cabinet, 11.5 x 9.0 x 8.8 cm
Russia was once known for its fine historic Amethyst locations, and in particular Hasavarka for it sceptered Amethysts - although they are very rarely seen for sale today. The crystals have good purple color with wisps of Smoky throughout, and the luster is superb. The outer zones of the Amethysts are quite gemmy and refractive, creating an additional 'sparkle' that adds even more to the aesthetic... Read more
Toenail – A “gut feeling” but often overlaps between a large thumbnail and a small miniature
Miniature – Maximum 5.0 cm
Small Cabinet – Maximum 9.4 cm
Cabinet – Maximum 18.0 cm
Large Cabinet – Over 18.0 cm
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