STUNNING, absolutely GEMMY, intense green emeralds in matrix from the Panjshirs! This is an amazing matrix miniature of unusual quality not just fo rthe matricx, but for the sheer quality of the crystals themselves which is unusual in Panjshiri specimens.
ex. George Elling
A HUGE and SIGNIFICANT crystal, complete and unrepaired, from this old classic locality. This is remarkable for the size, but also for the form and quality of the symmetric termination atop. You seldom see them in such condition. Old piece, from the George Elling Collection.
ex. Ken Hollman
This large crystal is remarkably well formed for this location, and has an intense blue color whereas most arepale and ugly(-er). It is a significant old US locality piece, thus.The termination is intact at the front, and contacted to the left and rear where it grew into quartz (a bit of which remains atop).
A gorgeous peachy-pink morganite crystal with INTENSE color (unusually deep hued!), perched on a natural pedestal of albite. The crystal is 7 cm and complete, not repaired, and is fairly translucent. This is a piece that looks impressive, yet does not break the bank to own. Few morganites are coming out anymore, from Afghanistan, and fewer still cthat are any kind of quality can be had in this price range. Luckily, we got it as a trimmer/fixer and were able to expose the crystal ourselves, from the confining matrix, to create a more aesthetic piece.
A 3-dimensional cluster that gives new meaning to the words "aqua spray!" This pristine cluster is one of the best of this style I have seen recently, evoking a memory of a famous pocket that came out around 1988, where all the sprays were so dramatic (albeit with smaller crystal size). Now, such forms come as a trickle, a few per year perhaps. This one is particularly nice because of the size of the crystals, the deep color, the transparency throughout the upper 75%, the pristine condition , and the wonderful 360-degree symmetry and displayability. Mined about 6 months ago.
This is a briliantly lustrous, sparkling blue specimen that is large and unrepaired. The major crystal is 4 inches tall, and 2 inches across the termination! ALL crystals here are GLASSY, with the best lustre I have seen, almost glassy and polished in appearance. Even the terminations share the incredible lustre and clarity. Within the larger crystal is a large moving water bubble, easily seen; and a few smaller ones as well. The whole piece is a pocket floater! It broke away from the pocket wall and the backside was microcrystallized, so it is complete even on the bottom in a technical sense. More importantly, it look sgood all around, 360 degrees. I have not seen any aquas quite like this one, with the combination of lustre, color, and interesting inclusions (that serve to disperse light and enhance the color and sparkle inside). I will also add that large aqua plates like this, with no repairs, are VERY uncommon. The "Roof of the World" was not as productive this past summer season...pickings were slim at the Denver Show and this one, which I bought from a normal supplier en route to the show, was one of the very few pieces of any significance I saw there. I was lucky to get it as well, as this person holds a US citizenship and other Pakistani and Afghani dealers seem to have not been able to clear the visa hurdles to get their specimens here, this year.
This matrix piece features a centered crystal of pastel blue aquamarine, of absolutely limpid clarity and high internal brightness. The crystal measures about 4 x 4 x 3.5 cm in size and is pristine, not a ding on it. There are dozens of teeny tiny accent crystals that add sparkle to it, really apparent in person, coating one side. The muscovite matrix in which it is nestled contrasts with the form and color of the sharp hexagonal beryl. While Nagar aquamarines are common at some level, this is an outstanding piece for the price range and aesthetics, that I think rises above the crowd. Joe Budd photos
A beautiful emerald with the vibrant green color and glassy lustre characteristic of La Pita Mine, 3.6 cm tall, contrasted nicely on its matrix. Recently mined in early 2011, this is a most unusual specimen in that the emerald is perched on, rather embedded IN, a large rhombohedral calcite crystal. The emerald is uncracked and unrepaired, remarkable for one of this size - they usually show stress fractures at this size. It is not a thin crystal either - you can look into its depths and see it goes into the calcite. The calcite is sawed on the bottom and back, where it had to be cut out of surrounding hard rock- this does not show from the display face, in any case. What is particularly nice about this piece, is that it is very , very difficult to get anything like this display size in an emerald, without breaking the bank. While there is a compromise in that the crystal is embedded in the calcite, you get a lot of emerald and a lot of green flash in a larger piece than one might expect, for the money. Joe Budd photos
This is a very large, robust crystal featuring deep saturated color and high luster. It is a perfectly balanced thumbnail, with just the right amount of matrix to accent but not overwhelm. Most such thumbnails are small, spindly crystals. This is fat and impressive at 10 x 8 x 19 mm in size
An unusual association! This specimen hosts an absolutely gem , water-clear crystal f goshenite (colorless, with no trace of blue to my eye), associated with a fluorite on muscovite matrix. The goshenite crystal is really quite nice - exceptional in clarity, lustre, and brightness. The association is just a bonus
This tall, trnaslucent crystal is perfectly formed, not repaired, and simply a beautiful example of a Colombian emerald without breaking the bank.
A simply stunning gem aquamarine with pastel blue color that contrasts with the stark white crystallized matrix. The photos do NOT do this piece justice. It has absolutely total transparency, an attractive bevelled prism termination, and is perfectly placed in just the right amount of contrasting matrix. For a miniature, to combine such qualities with matrix association, is rare. This is , in person, stunning. ex. Richard and Mary Nelson Collection
ex. John Barlow
This morganite specimen would fetch a premium from ANY locality - it is not priced high without merit, aside from provenance, in other words. The crystal is 5 cm across and glassy, with a unique scalloped surface termination I have only rarely seen on beryls, and on none other from San Diego County that i can recall. Note that this is, as a bonus, from the STEWART MINE and not from the more famously known White Queen. The piece was probably found prior to 1960, I am told. It is, in person, highly uniique and interesting. The book photo shows neither the lustre or the color, in their efforts to nail down the look of the termination. In person it is sa lustrous as in the top-right photo, closer to the color as shown in the lower-left photo, and with the gemminess shown in the lower-right photo if you can merge all of those shots in your imagination. The specimen was illustrated with his beryls on page 137 of the Barlow Collection book (1998). Barlow sold the collection in 1998 and this piece disappeared into the private collection of Lawrence Conklin. Until I got ahold of it, the piece had NEVER been cleaned and so this is the reason it sparkles more now compared to the book photo in which the matrix looks more gray than white.
ex. Irv Brown
ex. John Barlow
This type of emerald is characterized by thin septae of carboniferous shale separating the crystal into a flower like appearance. Trapiche Emeralds are quite rare, and highly valued especially for their value in jewelry. They are typically made into cabochons, rather than faceted stones. This one has excellent color, bright and showy, wehreas many are dull. It has gemmy areas within the pattern. At 27 carats in weight, this has considerable gem value, therefore, if you were to make a few cabs out of it.
ex. Irv Brown
Without a doubt, this is the best Afghan specimen emerald for quality, regardless of size, I have ever seen. White marble acts as the matrix for a very gemmy, deep, emerald green, lustrous, crystal that measures 1.25 cm in length. One seldom sees specimens for sale and Afghan emeralds are uncommon in collections. Mostly, they are sold over there for cutting and carving, and seldom reach our side of the world.
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