Emerald on Quartz
Small Cabinet, 7.9 x 7.0 x 4.5 cm
Kagem Emerald Mine, Kafubu, Ndola, Copperbelt Province, Zambia
This specimen is a very rich plate of emeralds embedded in massive quartz matrix, with a thin coating of mica-schist on the exposed upper surface where the emeralds pop out of the quartz. This specimen is unusual in that most of the pieces now brought to market from this mine have either quartz or mica but not both on the same specimen, indicating perhaps this was at the boundary layer of the two types of deposition. Overall, it is very 3-dimensional and very colorful. The large crystal atop is naturally distorted, "bent," a rare phenomenon in beryls. It is nearly 4 cm long, and is not repaired. It has a lustrous termination, though with minor edge wear around the rim. In PERSON THESE ARE A MORE VIBRANT GREEN, but come across darker in the photos than in real life. When backlit, of course, they practically glow. This is one of the richest specimens I have seen from these new finds, in terms of overall concentration and mass of emeralds on one plate. Admittedly, the specimen production from here is not very much in terms of quantity yet (and perhaps never will be), but of that production I have seen most of what was prepared in the last year as the mine finally made a specimen-preparation deal to get them out to our market - from that sample, this was fairly impressive for overall impact and concentration. Upper-left professional photo is by Joe Budd.