Thumbnail, 2.8 x 1.6 x 1.2 cm
N'Chwaning I Mine, Kalahari manganese field, Northern Cape Province, South Africa

These treasured jewels from the famous finds of the late 1970s and early 1980s only turn up in old collections. This is a very balanced, 3-dimensional thumbnail cluster with superb aesthetics. The cherry-red color is good, and the gemminess is outstanding. These were collected in haste, so many of the Rhodo specimens from here have some cleaved tips, as does this particular piece. However, this piece has smaller and LESS cleavage than any other thumbnail I have had in a long while, and you have to really look to see them as they are so small. It is hard to deny the overall quality and visual beauty of this thumbnail from one of the pre-eminent mineral pockets of modern times, and they are incredibly rare in this quality as a full, gemmy, balanced thumbnail specimen. Things like this just do not turn up often, and are priced accordingly...they are among the most jewel-like centerpieces of any fine thumbnail collection.