From the TYPE LOCALITY for this rare species, here is a beautiful, extremely metallic and lustrous, 5 x 4 mm crystal in a protected cavity of sugary dolomite matrix. From the collection of a longtime Lengenbach collector, which was sold off recently.
From the TYPE LOCALITY for this rare species, here is a beautiful, striated, 9-mm crystal in a protected cavity of sugary dolomite matrix. From the collection of a longtime Lengenbach collector, which was sold off recently. This is a fat , exposed, display-quanlity crystal! In this display quality, rarely seen
From the TYPE LOCALITY for this rare species, here is a protected cavity hosting a cluster of 2-3mm striated sartorite crystals, in sugary dolomite matrix. From the collection of a longtime Lengenbach collector, which was sold off recently.
This is an OUTSTANDING specimen of crystallized groutite in huge crystals and in a rich quantity, as well. The clusters of crystals measure to 1 cm and are richly scattered about a hollow vug inside this manganese nodule. The overall specimen is important for the species, but also interesting for how it shows the crystals formed, inside a hollowed nodule of the elemental manganese. It displays nicely from either angle, vertical or horizontal. When I first saw this specimen I was sure it was perhaps manganite or some other species, as groutite seldom forms such large crystals , nor such rich masses from other locations! But then I remembered I had one such before, as well. They are rare, and seldom seen. Also, the lustre on these crystals is quite good. From an old German collection recently starting to be sold...
From the TYPE LOCALITY for this rare species, here is a beautiful, striated, 7.5-mm sartorite crystal in a protected cavity of sugary dolomite matrix. From the collection of a longtime Lengenbach collector, which was sold off recently. Note there is a smudge of realgar and possibly other, rarer species in microcrystals, to the side.
A huge crystal of just over 8mm, which is remarkable for this old classic locality, frozen in massive calcite matrix. Good Finland uvarovites are generally regarded as best of species, for size and intense color, and are now old classics hard to obtain. This is from an old German collection.
ex. John Sinkankas
A huge gadolinite crystal from one of the old classic locales for this species, and from the John Sinkankas collection. It masses 583 grams which is VERY hefty when held, and is a giant crystal - the big ones seldom maintain such sharp form. Sinkankas, a renowned author and collector, noted its value as $125 in 1968 (he purchased for a bargain price of $20 in 1965 - but that was a lot of money then, too, for an ugly rock!), and wrote that it is "Very large, sharp, and exceptional" on his original label, an index card in his hand which accompanies the piece. I purchased this directly from John at his home in San Diego in about 1998, and sold it to collector Bob Nowakowski , who had a large suite of exceptional crystals of the Rare Earth Elements species. He held it until recently.
This specimen features SHARP, pseudo-octohedral crystals of atacamite (to 6 mm), robust and sharp on massive matrix. Most atacamite was found in the Antofogasta Region and not in the Santiago region of Chile. A very appealing, display-worthy specimen that is an unusual example for the species. For those who collect aesthetic display rarities,this is one sure to stump most people into guessing it is Libethenite or Malachite first. NOTE ADDED FROM CURATOR Pierre-Jacques Chiappero of the Parisian National Musuem: I write you about your specimen of atacamite TUC 102-08. I recognize immediatly the origin of this specimen. It belongs to the Vesignie collection. The name atacamite and the catalog number 2950 A had been written by him. Vesignie bought this specimen from the Parisian mineral dealer Deyrolle in june 1930 for 81 french francs. The initial handwriting give the locality in french that i can translate by from the copper mines of Naltagua near Las Casas in Santiago province, Chile. This specimen was obtained by the Museum in 1955. It was probably exchanged to a collector or a dealer during the sixties.
ex. Daniel Trinchillo Sr.
Probably dating to the 1980s heyday here, this is a 2 kilo GEM crystal of alpine smoky quartz, of a quality normally only associated for brightness and clarity with the Swiss and French Alps. However, Russia also had a few! This locality, in its heyday, produced an exquisite suite of alpine cleft type minerals. The smokies were generally smaller, and more pale, smoky to gray in color. This bright quality and intense color, combined with gemminess, are a rarity. In excellent condition, this is complete all around with no significant wear, save only at the lower part of its base (and that is mostly contact, not damage). This specimen was exported from Russia by dealer Daniel Trinchillo in the 1990s, and was then appropriated/purchased by his father , a well-known quartz collector, before it ever hit the market. It has since been in the collection of Trinchillo Sr. Comes with custom lucite base In person, an imposing specimen!
ex. George Holloway
An elegant, tapering, curvaceous wire silver from the classic old mines of the Saxony silver district! This is a superb example in its size and price range, with a complexity not just to the curving top, but a sinuous twisting complexity to the main rope itself that is unusual. IN PERSON, this is much more 3-dimensional and curves in volume, not just in 2 dimensions; and stands out from a large crowd. Formerly in the George Holloway collection, traded to me in the 1990s, and now back with me today. For the size range and price range, this has Style!
Out of all phenakite locales, these Mogok crystals stand in a unique place because of their sharp twinning about the long axis, easily visible in the complex spoked terminations. This is a superb, GEMMY, sharply twinned single crystal of phenakite, 12 grams in mass. The crystal here is exceptional in size and gemminess, and comes from the first trickle out of here in 2008 or so. Since that time, a few small pockets have been hit, sparse and intermittently worked. But no major or large find has turned up and these continue to be hard to obtain. This is a superb example, and quite distinct from phenakite from other locales.
This specimen is as jewel-like as you can get for an uncut tanzanite, with absolutely top glassy lustre, that looks polished, combined with a complex sharp termination and a rich natural color. This kind of clarity and perfection of form, combined with the freaky lustre and the color scheme here, has come out only in small amounts of crystals, generally of abou tthis size or smaller, from Block D in recent years. Admittedly, the material of this particular style is not the most intense blue, or purple, or red (on c-axis); but rather has more subtle pink/maroon coloring on the long axis and a lighter pastel hue of blue. It has not been heat-treated, which emphasizes and conforms the blue and purple hues to a standard , while squelching the natural red or pink color on the c-axis. It is pristine and complete all around, and displays like a Jewel in a showcase. This is , due to the lighter color palette, not the traditional "major" tanzanite of intense blue (and there, heat treated pieces are acceptable to me when disclosed as such), but rather a more rare and subtle crystal that to me is all the more desirable for its unique qualities. 32 grams
A superb, complex crystal, totally gemmy and brilliantly lustrous! It has a more cityscape look to it, a very geometric patterning. They are really quite unusual specimens fo the species and look for all the world like colorless garnets. It is 2.6 cm long, very well crystallized and complete all around. 7.5 grams. This is one of my very last phenakites from this small new find of august, 2009.
A superb, complex crystal, totally gemmy and brilliantly lustrous! It is 3.6 cm tall, very well crystallized and robust, complete all around, and 11 grams. This is one of my very last phenakites from this small new find of august, 2009.
This specimen features a thick nest of silver wires shooting up from the acanthite matrix, with small curlicues at the base of the silver. Extremely rich, this is a dramatic piece thick with the silver all over its display face atop. It is very impressive in person and the contrast of extremely bright silver vs the black matrix is striking. In fact, this is one of the largest silver specimens we have yet seen from the Imiter finds, which came out a few years ago. It was priced when I saw it at over 20,000 euros, but I obtained it in exchange and amortised down to make it affordable. For a Kongsberg, Peruvian, or now even Chinese silver, you would pay a lot more for a piece that has a lot less significance for the finds.
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