Tantalite-(Fe) (illustrated)
Parelhas, Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil
Miniature, 3.7 x 3.5 x 2.1 cm
Ex. Bruno and Rolando Gioia

We haven't seen a robust, intergrown Tantalite-(Fe) crystal cluster like this from anywhere! The main crystal measures 3.7 cm x 2.1 x 1.0 cm and the interpenetrant component is 3.3 x 1.2 x 0.6 cm and both are charcoal black and very sharply textbook-orthorhombic in form. They display a metallic to slightly satin-metallic luster with sharp edges and crystal faces. This crystal is double-ended with only minor contacting at the bottom termination where there are negative impressions from the matrix minerals to which it was formerly attached. The intersecting crystal is nicely terminated on one end and has a complex wedge-shaped termination that may be a result of it growing against another crystal. Just for comparison with gem crystals, we thought we'd provide the mass of this hefty Tantalite-(Fe) mini which is 43.7 grams (heavy!)! Like so many choice treasures of this local Brazilian collection built over two generations, it has special aesthetics. Illustrated in a full page photo, Mineral Collections of Brazil, 2020, page 118.