New Europe Update 18 May 2021

18 May 2021

HAVING toured the British Isles last week we are heading across the English Channel to France and embarking on a European tour.

In today’s update we have specimens from Austria, the Baltic, Bulgaria, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Poland, Romania, Russia, Spain and Switzerland. There is a good spread of species including a few rare items and some seldom seen locations.

Before we set off, we just want to remind you about the Crystal Classics Summer Open Day which will be held on Saturday, June 12 between 10 am and 5 pm. If you have not yet booked a place, please contact Debbie (details below) and she will get back to confirm your place. If you have never visited the East Coker showroom then you are in for a real treat. Thousands of superb specimens are set out in beautiful display cases and drawered cabinets beneath oak beams bedecked with antique crystal models and other mining and mineralogical ephemera.

Meanwhile, back in Europe, we begin in France with a Calcite from Pau, a Pyromorphite from Les Farges and a Fluorite with Baryte from Bergheim in Alsace. The Calcite forms complex scalenohedral crystals developed to 2 cm, one beautifully twinned more towards the “butterfly” habit than the more-common “heart” twin. The crystals are almost water-clear and sit on a bed of translucent milky Calcite. The Pyromorphite forms a cluster of lustrous light clove brown crystals measuring to 1.4 cm overgrown by a druse of yellowish-green fine acicular Pyromorphite needles, a stunning combination. And from the little known limestone quarry at Bergheim in Ribeauvillé, a good fine cabinet specimen of lilac-tinted Fluorite crystals, typically 5 mm on edge and of pale lilac intensifying to purple towards their edges and corners.

From the Jaimina mine in Asturias, Spain, take a look at the modified crystal of Fluorite with a colourless phantom with colour bands of delicate purple and pale cornflower blue. The crystal measures to 4.2 cm and has a little attached white Baryte and micro-crystals of Pyrite.

The mines around Kamariza and Lavrion on the Attica Peninsula of southern Greece have yielded fabulous specimens for the past 3,500 years and are a sure favourite amongst many collectors. From here we have a lovely deep apple-green Smithsonite, in the habit of micro-sucrosic crystals forming a hillocky, botryoidal miniature. Cuprian Adamite is also a classic from this ancient mining district and our small cabinet specimen of drusy sky-blue to turquoise-green Cuprian Adamite covering white bubbly Aragonite over a rusty brown Goethite gossan matrix is superb.

Today’s rarest offering is an Emplectite, a copper-bismuth sulphosalt from Schneeberg in Saxony. The Emplectite forms a metallic white-silver radial crystal structure measuring to 3 cm, although often appears fragmented long the crystal’s long axes within a Quartz matrix. From Romania we have a delightful black Ferberite bladed crystal standing vertical on a mixed Galena and Pyrite matrix coated with snow-white Calcite crystals. The Calcites are themselves superb, forming individual, highly distorted and flattened rhombohedrons, which stack to create vermiform (worm-shaped) chains which criss-cross the matrix’s surface. And from the ancient Romanian mining area of Moldova Noua, a terrific Azurite displaying bright lustrous royal blue crystals measuring 3 to 4 mm and set amongst light peppermint green earthy Malachite.

There are two fabulous specimens from Austria: from the Rauris Valley close to Salzburg, a fine cabinet specimen of red to dark maroon Rutile crystals with many displaying knee-joint twinning. Crystals are abundantly scattered over a white crystalline druse of Feldspar. And from Oberdorf an der Laming, a first-class cabinet specimen of large glassy hexagonal Strontianite crystals richly scattered over snow-white Celestine crystals.

Other classics include a Russian Uvarovite Garnet from the Archduke Stephan Collection, beautiful candy-pink manganese bearing Calcite crystals and Calcite preferentially coating glassy Quartz crystals, both from the Madan ore field in Bulgaria and a fabulous Amethyst Quartz with Eisenkiesel faces of mottled orange-brick red from Heißer Stein mine in Germany.

Admittedly, to represent the mineralogy of the European countries in 21 specimens is impossible, but at the very least we hope today’s selection showcases a taste of the colour and diversity the continent has to offer. Enjoy and we hope you find a great addition to your collection.


If you'd like to see a video of any of the specimens listed above then please contact us at and we'll be happy to assist you. We endeavour to respond to all enquires within 24 hours during weekdays, however at the weekend it might take us a little longer to respond.

We are delighted to announce that the Crystal Classics Summer Open Day will be taking place on Saturday, June 12.

Our beautiful showroom in East Coker, Somerset will be open from 10am to 5pm and will be packed with thousands of fine and rare minerals. There will be many specimens from new, recently purchased collections as well as many fresh Fluorite finds from our mines in Weardale, County Durham.

A delicious breakfast and lunch will also be provided by The Village Cafe which is located next door to our offices.

To book your place please email Debbie at or by phone 01935 862 673 to register your interest.

COVID-19 guidelines will be in place during the day and the following is expected of all visitors:

- Face masks must be worn at all times
- Social distancing must be carried out
- You must wash your hands upon entry to the showroom (in addition there will be several hand sanitiser dispensers provided throughout the building)

It promises to be a great day and we look forward to welcoming you all.



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Author: JH
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