Corundum (Var: Sapphire)
Small Cabinet, 6.0 x 4.3 x 2.9 cm
Zazafotsy Quarry (Amboarohy), Zazafotsy Commune, Ihosy District, Horombe Region, Fianarantsoa Province, Madagascar

This specimen features a 1.7 cm-long crystal perched smartly on matrix. These corundums are generally called sapphires on the market when blue and rubies when more red, though most show some zoning...but the mineralogists tell me all are "bi-colored sapphires." This crystal, however, is a more pure red than most any other I have had from this locale, and stays red whether in fluorescent or halogen lighting. It has just a slight tinge of purple or darker color to it. These normally go varying shades of red/purple and even to blue-purple depending on which lighting source you use to look at them. However, this one seems as close to pure ruby in color as any I have seen from here, though technically it's still a "red sapphire" in name on chemistry. The crystal is complete and freestanding all-around. The form is sharply hexagonal, with a fine terminal face showing classic corundum trigons on the very top.