Beryl (Var: Aquamarine), Muscovite
Aliabad, Hunza Valley, Gilgit District, Northern Areas, Pakistan
Cabinet, 14.2 x 7.8 x 7.2 cm
Each of the crystals on this matrix specimen is superb in gemminess and transparency, with glassy luster. They exhibit fine transparency and rich blue color. Both measure about 4 cm tall and 3.5 cm across the width of the terminations. However, the leftmost crystal is a normal hexagonal prism, a stereotypic beryl crystal. The rightmost is truncated on the depth axis and so is compressed, creating a starkly contrasting geometry to the crystal on the left. Why this should be, is hard to explain - usually beryl crystals on the same matrix plate would have identical habits and it is rare to find otherwise. The crystals rest in, and are complemented by, a nest of muscovite blades that covers underlying base rock.