Chalcopyrite on Calcite
Baisha Copper Mine, Daye, Huangshi District, Hubei, China
Small Cabinet, 9.3 x 5.6 x 4.1 cm

This is a stunningly attractive, iridescent Chalcopyrite on Calcite from a limited find in Hubei, China many years ago. These are rare on the market today in any quality, but this is one of the better colored pieces with a full rainbow palette, whereas most were golden and had only greens and light blues. A balanced dusting of sparkling, multi-colored iridescent, less than 0.5 mm Chalcopyrite crystals cover whitish gray Calcite scalenohedrons to 2.5 cm that make up a very attractive grouping. The color of the peacock iridescence is truly like a kaleidoscope and ranges from scintillating orange to yellow to green and then red and blue! These are truly something unique to a specific place and time for this find and it is a particularly breathtaking specimen, and one of the best small cabinet pieces of the lot. We know, because this was an early one we sold in 2010, and got back. We have been back to our sources at the mines in Hubei many times since then looking for more, but they are gone, and nothing like them has turned up since. Rob was fortunate to be walking through the opening day of the Shanghai Show in 2008, at the old Russian Embassy building in Shanghai (which was open to the winter air and freezing!), when novice dealers from Daye unpacked 5 tables of this material. It was very annoying waiting two days to see it all and we bought everything good at that time (Rob and Monica were also there in Shanghai!). After the show, we went to Daye and saw the remaining pieces, and bought several large blocks with pockets, which were trimmed up and sold over the next 4 years or so. No more came out. We suspected that this was from the large Daye open pit Iron mine, but we never got a precise name location until later. Only later, once more did not come out, we were told this is from a nearby mine in the area, the Baisha Copper Mine, Daye, Huangshi District, Hubei, China (near Wuhan).