Cafarsite (type locality)
Monte Cervandone, Binn, Goms, Valais, Switzerland
Thumbnail, 2.9 x 2.5 x 2.2 cm
Ex. Howard Belsky
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This is a textbook-shaped, large crystal cluster of Cafarsite from a classic occurrence that traverses the Alps of two countries! This is a significant crystal cluster for both the size of crystals and its great luster, and it's from the type locality deposit on the Swiss side of the Alps. The top two crystals are complete and measure 2.0 cm across with the partial one at the base 1.7 cm! Most specimens of this species flaunt crystals of around a centimeter and many have a dull luster. This one, however, is one of the most lustrous clusters of Cafarsite that I have yet seen for sale and the crystals are very large for the species. Cafarsite is isometric and these crystals are complex and quite geometric. They are a deep brown-red and are even translucent along the edges which is very unique. Upon quick examination, they look more like a Sphalerite of complex habit than a Cafarsite! Cafarsite is a complex hydrated calcium-manganese-iron-titanium arsenate. Exceptional quality! From the remarkable collection of Howard Belsky, deep in Swiss minerals and old European classics, which we handled some years ago (and so we assume this to be Swiss rather than Italian): https://mineralogicalrecord.com/labels.asp?colid=1707