- Orange Prehnite
- Miniature, 3.2 x 2.3 x 1.5 cm
- N'Chwaning II Mine, Kuruman, Kalahari manganese field, N. Cape Prov., South Africa
- Ex. Charlie Key
This is NOT the Wessels Mine "Inesite" material people normally associate with Kalahari! This is, instead, from a small find at N'Chwaning many years later, 2000-2002, of prehnite that is still often confused with Wessels inesite as they turn up on the market again. The orange Prehnites are in a rich coating of very gemmy crystals, orange in color, and themselves are quite rare for both color and crystal habit for the species. There is a whole scientific paper on them written by Bruce Cairncross, as Prehnite seems to be significant in its near-absence and rarity in the Kalahari fields. To my eye, this is an exquisite thumbnail specimen (and we handled a number of them from Charlie Key, back in the day, for context). This is from the personal thumbnail collection of (semi-) retired dealer Charlie Key whom is certainly, in my book, the top dealer in African minerals in our lifetimes. I obtained this collection in 2008.