Baryte, Realgar
Cavnic (Kapnic; Kapnik), Maramures Co., Romania
Cabinet, 11.7 x 7.8 x 5.2 cm
This is an incredible old piece from a trickle of small finds that I am told came out in the 1950s and 1960s. It is by far the best specimen I have seen of the habit for not only size of the crystals themselves, but for the size of the overall piece, which approaches 5 inches. This specimen features many intergrown, color zoned (tan to red), translucent and lustrous crystals of Baryte. The largest crystals measure a whopping 4.0 cm in length. The red or ocher color is due to small amounts of included realgar, which is not uncommon from this locality per se. It is very rare included in Baryte, however. When it is included, the inclusions tend to be uniformly dispersed to make for "red Baryte," of a uniform brick-red color. I had only before ever seen in person 2 of these specimens, showing oriented or directionalized inclusions of the realgar clearly placed in different layers of the Baryte, and said to be from the older finds. The piece is, obviously, striking and worth a certain amount for beauty. But i'll add that it is of a very unique style that, so much as I know, does not occur anywhere else in the world to date. 11.7 x 7.8 x 5.2 cm