Axinite var. Ferroan
Puiva Mount, Saranpaul, Prepolar Ural, Western-Siberian Region, Russia
ex. Herb Obodda
Small Cabinet, 9.6 x 8.0 x 4.5 cm
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Axinite from this remote, high altitude alpine-type deposit has long been considered the world standard for the species. What most people do not realize is that much of the material was found in the 1980s, and some in the mid 1990s, and none of it was very recent. When the barriers came down and Russian specimens flooded onto the market in the 1990s, we assumed these were modern and plentiful. They were not. And today, matrix specimens like this with aesthetics and importance, are few and far between. This complete-all-around specimen has wonderful aesthetics, way better than most, with well-exposed, translucent crystals of the rich, uniquely Puiva color. This piece also has something harder to quantify and describe, a rich internal "shimmer effect" that makes the crystals really leap out and look more 3-dimensional in person. I have seen many specimens too jumbly, or with one isolated crystal, but so few with a rich horizon like this has, with so many good crystals perched on matrix, but not in a mad mess. All in all, it is just one of my favorites in this size, period. It is nearly pristine, though has some very trivial little dings or wear that I have chosen not to restore (although one could do so), as all of these collected back in that time and place had little damages, generally. To appreciate the quality of this piece, it must be seen in person, and it is a growing rarity that actually is dramatic enough to fit in any high level collection alongside gem crystals, and still hold its own! Photo by Joe Budd. Comes with a custom lucite base. View 360 video at https://goo.gl/5Q6zNT