Fluorite with Dolomite and Quartz
Cabinet, 16.2 x 10.3 x 6.3 cm
Green Fluorite Mine, Manaoshan Mtn., Suxian District, Chenzhou Prefecture, Hunan Prov., China
Emplaced aesthetically on a sparkling quartz druse atop rock matrix, is a "floating" crystal of complexly-grown stacked cube faces of fluorite, 8 cm wide and 6 cm deep. It is complete all around and looks like one single cuboctahedral crystal was stretched as it grew to extend across the matrix like a slinky. I cannot think of another way to explain it. The dimensions of this crystal are just unusually wide and imposing. The contrasts of color, shape, and luster are dramatic. These fluorites are from a pocket collected at the end of 2016 into early 2017, and I have actually been into the mine several times to see it during that process, watching carefully. The association with pink dolomite is a new one for this productive mine, which had produced plenty of green fluorite in the past - though usually in solid masses rather than as discrete crystals. What makes these different, and to me far more valuable as a collector, is that separation on matrix which is so rarely seen from anywhere, let alone this mine which produced so much in the past of green fluorite, yet so few of actual top specimens. I have been back since this pocket was mined, and the region seems to have changed again, and we saw no more dolomite. I believe this will remain a signature find of Chinese minerals.