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Aesthetically perched high matrix crystalline white albite large
Shengus, Skardu, Gilgit Valley, Pakistan
Small Cabinet, 5.6 x 3.2 x 2.7 cm
Aesthetically perched high on a matrix of crystalline, white albite is a large, well formed, lustrous and partially translucent, reddish orange crystal, measuring 2.5 cm across. When backlit the gemmy highlights are exposed. This is a superbly crystallized and large garnet from the locale. Like many of this size, it shows incipient cracking lines, but in this case they are really trivial and the crystal has not started to crack and separate. So, it is very sharp for the size here. It is complete all around 360 degrees except for only a small tiny contact on one back corner. This crystal is like something out of a textbook, just perched nice and high on matrix!
Beautiful quite distinctive baby classic Navegadora Mine Minas Gerais
Navegadora mine, Conselheiro Pena, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Thumbnail, 2.3 x 2.1 x 1.2 cm
Beautiful and quite distinctive, this is a 'baby' classic from the Navegadora Mine in Minas Gerais, which is known for these unusual and striking Spessartines. This thumbnail is totally gemmy, has a rich burgundy color, and is quite lustrous. The irregular shape creates the appearance of etching, but it is, in fact, cleanly and completely crystallized. An excellent and attractive thumbnail with style!
Not surprisingly good Aussie Garnets Broken Hill early mid 1900s hard
Broken Hill, Yancowinna Co., New South Wales, Australia
Thumbnail, 2.6 x 2.5 x 1.8 cm
Not surprisingly, good Aussie Garnets from Broken Hill, found in the early to mid 1900s, are hard to come by... so this excellent Spessartine is well worth looking at. The main crystal is lustrous, 2 cm across, and has a deep red surface sparkle to it that pleases the eye. There are a few small contact points, but the overall aesthetics are very good. Most of these are por in luster, having formed and then been encased in galena ore which had to be physically removed. THIS PIECE, though, is a rare pocket crystal which was not so encased, and has fabulous luster. Much more uncommon...!
This pristine display specimen heyday mid 2000s It sharp GEM
Wushan Spessartine Mine, Tongbei, Yunxiao Co., Zhangzhou Prefecture, Fujian Province, China
Large Cabinet, 18.0 x 13.5 x 8.0 cm
This is a pristine display specimen from the heyday of this mine in the mid-2000s. It has sharp, GEM TRANSPARENT smoky quartz crystals on which are perched GEM TRANSPARENT orange garnet crystals. The contrasts, with the light sprinkling of garnet atop quartz and feldspar, are striking. Seldom do you get a plate this size in such condition, and with such black-on-white contrast. The garnets are all gem quality and have more life to them in person than photos tend to ascribe. Cameras just cannot capture the twinkling effect of garnets as they catch the light. This is 360 degrees, and complete all around. This particular specimen was from the personal collection of the son of the family which controlled the main mine here, which I purchased in China in 2013. Joe Budd photos.
This locality simply dry years In 2013 perked bit renewed mining
Wushan Spessartine Mine, Tongbei, Yunxiao Co., Zhangzhou Prefecture, Fujian Province, China
Cabinet, 10.0 x 9.0 x 3.0 cm
This locality has simply been "dry" for the last few years. In 2013, it perked up a bit with renewed mining efforts and produced several pockets. However, only one pocket, with perhaps a few dozen pieces, really was the right quality. This pocket of saturated wine-red garnets, overlaying smoky quartz points, is the best we have seen from here in almost 10 years. This cabinet specimen from that find has zero damage, and a beautiful 3-dimensional spread of sparkling garnet. It is much better in person, as garnets sometimes photograph more flat than they appear. The faces and sharpness of these crystals rank them among the best from the locale. Joe Budd photos.
Once common market material dried years I bought private collection
Wushan Spessartine Mine, Tongbei, Yunxiao Co., Zhangzhou Prefecture, Fujian Prov., China
Large Cabinet, 15.0 x 9.1 x 5.3 cm
Once more common in the market, material from this mine dried up over the last few years. I had bought a private collection in China which had a suite of exceptional pieces collected in the heyday here from about 2002-2007. This was then in my own collection of Chinese minerals. This is a superbly formed, lustrous and translucent quartz crystal, measuring 14.7 cm in length - unusually fine in quality for this location in terms of luster and sharpness. It is studded with hundreds of glassy and gemmy, bright orange-colored spessartine crystals, to 3 mm across. Such large, pristine crystals where both species are of this high quality are almost unheard of, and the locality is effectively mined out. Very dramatic and beautiful! As a bonus, there are small orange gem garnets included INSIDE the tip of the quartz, seen on close inspection.
A highly unusual combination piece This specimen highlights elongated
Shengus, Haramosh Mountains, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan
Miniature, 4.4 x 4.2 x 4 cm
A highly unusual combination piece! This specimen highlights an elongated, large and attractive 3.8 cm Spessartine Garnet crystal from Pakistan. This lustrous, translucent, deep burgundy crystal has dodecahedral form with beveled edges, and it is etched along the contact with the matrix below. Associated are several inch-long, non-terminated Schorl crystals that have superb, striated luster. The aesthetics of this combination are excellent.
A special San Diego rarity beautiful garnets generally date Louis
Little 3 Mine, near Ramona, San Diego County, California, USA
Miniature, 4.5 x 4.3 x 3.7 cm
A special San Diego rarity, these beautiful garnets generally date to the Louis Spalding collecting era of the mid 1960s-1970s and are hard as heck to obtain today. Much gemmier in person, this is a well balanced and attractive combo piece from the mine! These are rare specimens indeed, as I know from living nearby for almost a decade. Few collectors, even in San Diego County, own a crystal as large and sharp as this one - most large crystals of this size have crackling in them, rendering them ugly. It is also exceedingly gemmy, much brighter and more lustrous in person than the photo appears. The garnet measures over 2 cm across at widest and 3 cm tall, and is complete and well-formed all around its termination. It is not complete on the rear-left side only, out of sight. This is a MAJOR spessartine miniature for the locality! Most large garnets of this size are cracked and hackly because the pegmatite was so disrupted by movement and by acidic solutions that liked to eat garnets away and leave semi-crystallized messes behind. Ex. Irv Brown Collection. Joe Budd Photos.
A really attractive large specimen featuring classic Little 3
Little Three Mine, Ramona, San Diego Co., California, USA
Cabinet, 12.3 x 7.5 x 7.4 cm
A really attractive large specimen featuring a classic Little 3 assemblage in decorative arrangement...the smoky in the middle is pristine save for one small contacted face (not damage), and is nicely accented by stark white albite and dozens of glittering little orange spessartines perched on every other species present (quartz, albite, muscovite blades) and even included within the smoky!
A 664 gram MONSTER crystal biggest complete crystals know deposit It
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Small Cabinet, 8 x 8 x 7 cm
A 664-gram MONSTER of a crystal, one of the biggest complete crystals we know of from the deposit. It is complete all around and nearly pristine! It is included with fibrous garnet and some black mineral, and has a few spots of attached red muscovite matrix attached to small parts of minor faces, but it is nevertheless overall very equant and symmetric and just plain impressive for a big crystal of garnet.
By just hair visibly hair crystal brilliant internal luster internally
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Thumbnail, 2.9 x 2.9 x 2.7 cm
By just a hair, but visibly a hair, this crystal has the most brilliant internal luster of any of them, and is internally the most gemmy to boot. It is 33 grams and perfect in form and symmetry all around except for a few small contacts on one side and the bottom. As you can see, from the best display side, it looks more like a cut gem than a crystal of natural garnet. The price is admittedly high, but this little guy JUMPS out at the eye, even amidst other really great pieces! That extra gemminess and clarity inside, really has impact.
A killer doublet floater complete nearly pristine The larger crystal
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 4.5 x 4.2 x 4.2 cm
A killer doublet, a floater, complete all around and nearly pristine. The larger crystal atop is 4 x 4 x 3 cm in size and securely penetrates into the bottom crystal for a tight lock. MUCH MORE GEMMY and intensely colored in person, even. Here, in the photos, you can see into the depths of the crystal but they do not convey the full effect.
This 218 gram cluster VERY FEW clusters far dramatic piece standard It
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Small Cabinet, 6 x 5 x 4.5 cm
This 218 gram cluster is one of a VERY FEW clusters found so far, and a dramatic piece by any standard. It features crystals to 4 cm intergrown, with seams of a strange red mica mixed into the junctions. Complete floater, with terminations all around! This is one of the largest clusters, and one of the best. It is totally unprecedented for a spessartine garnet specimen, to my mind.
One best thumbnails SUPER SHARP fully terminated carved looking golf
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Thumbnail, 2.4 x 2.3 x 2.3 cm
One of our best thumbnails, a SUPER SHARP, fully-terminated, carved-looking "golf ball." This is complete all around, and has intense orange color when backlit strongly. It is more gemmy/translucent in person, as well. Weight is 19 grams
A matrixy specimen featuring elongated gemmy spessartine 2 cm tall 1
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 2.7 x 2.5 x 1.5 cm
A "matrixy" specimen featuring an elongated gemmy spessartine about 2 cm tall and 1 cm thick perched atop a smaller crystal, backed by a bit of matrix; and with the whole piece a great toenail size in full!
One impactful thumbnails price SUPER SHARP 2 3 crystal intense orange
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Thumbnail, 2.4 x 2.4 x 2.2 cm
One of our more impactful thumbnails for the price, a SUPER SHARP, 2/3 crystal which has even more intense orange color when backlit strongly. It is more gemmy/translucent in person, as well. The piece is contacted where it grew against another crystal on the bottom but is 2.3 complete except for a slight ding in the back of the top termination (hence the low price). Some cutting rough value, I imagine. Weight is 18 grams
One best thumbnails SUPER SHARP fully terminated carved looking golf
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Thumbnail, 2.6 x 2.6 x 2.5 cm
One of our best thumbnails, a SUPER SHARP, fully-terminated, carved-looking "golf ball." This is complete all around, and has intense orange color when backlit strongly. It is really as good as other top thumbs here except only a slight black inclusion in the bottom 5% - but you have to mount it somewhere anyhow, so this does not really detract too much visually although the price is reduced accordingly. It is more gemmy/translucent in person, as well. Weight is 19 grams
A super miniature showy unusual elongated crystals cluster These
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 4.0 x 3.5 x 2.6 cm
A super miniature, very showy, with unusual elongated crystals in a cluster. These crystals have particularly good gemminess and you can really, in person, look right down into the crystals! As good as the singles are, these few doublet clusters are MUCH more rare. 66 grams
123 grams Large Miniature A literal golf ball sharp equant These faces
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 4.4 x 4.2 x 4.1 cm
123 grams. Large Miniature! A literal "golf ball," sharp and equant all around. These faces are SHARP! The crystal is much more gemmy and translucent in person, and glows intense fiery orange when backlit strongly. For the size, this is unusually well preserved with just a few small dings and one small chip on one tip. It is otherwise free of damage and amazingly symmetrical.
A MAJOR specimen 5 cm crystal matrix smaller crystal red mica weighing
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Small Cabinet, 6.3 x 5.6 x 4.0 cm
A MAJOR specimen with a 5-cm-across crystal, on "matrix" of a smaller crystal and red mica, and weighing 191 grams. This is a REALLY impressive garnet specimen from any locality and for this locale, it jumps out for sheer size and for the nice way the major crystal is perched. Complete, if contacted in back, this makes for one of the most dramatic pieces I have yet seen.
A strangely elongated compound crystal weighs 155 grams major piece It
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 5.5 x 4.5 x 4.2 cm
A strangely elongated, compound crystal that weighs 155 grams, this is another major piece from the find. It has intense color, and when backlit just glows orange. The translucency is also fairly good, better than it shows here although not quite as good as some of the best singles. However the orange hue is equal to the top! Clusters of this size, and quality, are more rare though and the size overall makes it very impactful.
100 grams A golf ball sized like like superb gemmy crystal red orange
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 4.1 x 3.9 x 3.6 cm
100 grams. A golf ball-sized, like-like, superb gemmy crystal with red-orange color! It is exceptionally sharp, translucent, and equant. MUCH better in person!
A rare matrix specimen crystals 2 cm perched isolated matrix standing
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 5.0 x 3.7 x 3.0 cm
A rare matrix specimen with two crystals, one to 2 cm, perched isolated on matrix and standing up dramatically from it! 98 grams weight. This piece has the two sharp crystals actually floating in muscovite layers that seem to have covered the bottom of a compound crystal formed previously, into which the crystals atop settled and sunk in a bit. Its very appealing, overall, and again is one of the VERY few matrix specimens we have from here at this time.
One favorites striking miniature mandarin orange approximately 1 inch
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 3.3 x 3.3 x 2.3 cm
One of my favorites, a striking miniature with a mandarin-orange, approximately 1-inch and equant, translucent to transparent crystal, free of internal dark veils, just perched up and popping out from a natural pedestal of a smaller crystal! Complete all around except for a contact on the bottom where it attached to more matrix. This is one of the VERY FEW clusters of any kind of aesthetic appeal at all! This crystal glows with color when well lit and is one of the best for color, period. For overall 3-dimensionality, this was one of my favorites out of literally hundreds of pieces of the material for all these reasons. 48 grams.
Two frog eyes 1 8 cm sit perched atop matrix included larger garnet
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 3.5 x 3.2 x 2.6 cm
Two "frog-eyes" of 1.8 cm each sit perched atop a matrix-included larger garnet, giving us spectacular contrast! Such matrix-like pieces are extremely rare in this find and this one has garnets of high quality anyhow, perched upon it. If sold separately, they would still not be cheap. As this is one of the most aesthetic matrix pieces, it has to command a premium (no question about it), but its the only one like it that I have.
690 grams At 700 grams pound half crystal largest complete crystals
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Small Cabinet, 8.2 x 7.5 x 6.7 cm
690 grams! At almost 700 grams, this pound-and-a-half crystal is one of the largest complete crystals in the entire production. I have seen portions of bigger crystals, but none complete. The symmetry, the form, its astonishing when you take the size into account - and the thing is very impactful because of it! Complete on all sides, all around, save only for a small contact at the bottom.
A complete floater best example I seen particular crystal habit
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 5.5 x 4.3 x 3.5 cm
A complete floater, this is the best example I have seen of this particular crystal habit, unusually and dramatically elongated. It weighs 156 grams. The crystal is complete and free of any damage except for one shallow conchoidal fracture on one corner (and it can be displayed facing away up or down, anyhow). It is cheaper because of that little ding, but really this does not diminish the impact.
For high quality piece color translucency breaking bank best bargain
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 5.0 x 4.2 x 3.5 cm
For a high quality piece with color and translucency, without breaking the bank, this may be the best bargain of the lot because of that, if you don't mind two very small dings. It is 129 grams. This beautiful crystal has great depths of translucency, sharp form, among the best for luster, and is complete on all display faces. It has attached matrix underneath, and is thus not fully symmetric on the bottom where it grew out. It is ALMOST among the very best of the update with a five-figure price but has two very small dings I didn't even notice when buying, that slightly detract in person. If not, it would be 10k. But it is nevertheless a superb piece by any standard.
A somewhat included colorful totally complete garnet crystal good
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Miniature, 4.2 x 4.0 x 4.0 cm
A somewhat included, but still colorful and totally complete garnet crystal of good color and good size combined with the classic symmetry here! 103 grams.
282 grams complete A textbook crystal SUPER SHARP faces edges unusual
Loliondo, near Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Small Cabinet, 6 x 5.7 x 5.2 cm
282 grams and complete! A textbook crystal of SUPER SHARP faces and edges, with an unusual dark wine-red color. It is pristine and complete all around save only a small contact at one bottom face, with some translucency at the edges but generally dark. However, in a case, it looks wine-red and the sheer size and sharpness of form carry the day for display value.