New Wimbledon Update 02 July 2021

2 July 2021

WE continue our Wimbledon tennis themed update, albeit us cramming the two week’s Championship into just one.

The 2021 tournament is approaching its midway stage and the excitement builds towards next weekend’s finals. The Women’s Single final is always held on the last Saturday afternoon commencing at 2pm, followed by the men’s on Sunday afternoon. In addition to the prize money, the two most famous tennis trophies in the world are awarded: the Venus Rosewater Dish for the Ladies winner and that for the men is a silver gilt cup simply referred to as the Men Single's Trophy or Cup. Neither winner gets to keep these historic trophies but do receive smaller replicas.

Following on from Tuesday, we have several Wimbledon-inspired themes by which today’s 21 specimens have been chosen. The specimens are not seeded to avoid undue pre-match bias but know you will have your own favourite players and perhaps pick out a final winner.

Club Colours: The All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club’s colours are green, purple and white, colours very much reflected in today’s selection. We feel the perfect specimen is an Amethyst with Prehnite, Epidote and Calcite from the Goboboseb Mountains in Namibia, the exact colour combination and a specimen worthy of any Champion. Colourless to delicate violet Amethyst, lime to peppermint green Prehnite, dark green Epidote and white Calcite cover a grey volcanic matrix.

Green: Wimbledon greens are beautifully represented by a magnificent Pargasite in Marble from the Sungate mine in Vietnam; a spectacular Bisbee Malachite and a well-developed ball of crystalline light mint-green Prehnite measuring to 3.6 cm from Namibia. Mention must also be given to a fabulous gemmy green Fluorite from the Heavy Metal Pocket in Diana Maria mine, Weardale; a beautiful bright mossy leaf green Pyromorphite from the Burgam mine close to Stiperstones in Shropshire, England and a magnificent and very showy polished Malachite from Gumeshevskiy mine in the Middle Urals of western-central Russia.

Purple: As for purple, we are spoilt for choice. The two most intense are a small miniature Vesuvianite from Jeffrey mine at Asbestos in Québec, Canada and a Chromian Clinochlore, the variety Kämmererite, from the Kop Krom mine in Turkey. Beautiful purple Fluorite is well represented also. Do take a look at the terrific Purple Haze Pocket cabinet specimen from the Diana Maria mine in Weardale. This was a relatively small pocket discovered in 2018 and this is genuinely one of very few specimens remaining for sale. The crystals are a magnificent gemmy mauve-purple, the mauve containing strong suggestions of red, with opaque frosted snow-white centres, reminiscent of Boltsburn material. And talking of which, how about a rich dark mauve-purple specimen with great colour zoning and gemmy green phantoms within, typical of this most illustrious mine. There is also a lovely translucent inky purple Fluorite forming octahedral crystals to 2.3 cm on banded Aragonite from the Huraiskoye Fluorite Deposit in eastern Russia.

White: Well, there is a lot of white Marble with the Pargasite and white Aragonite with the Huraiskoye Fluorite plus a superb Quartz displaying excellent Japan Law twinning from Nepal.

New Balls Please: A spectacular 5.4 cm diameter ball of micro-crystalline Calcite crystals from Baia Mare in Romania would surely serve an ace. We also have another Calcite with Boulangerite inclusions from Herja mine in Romania. I personally think this specimen needs to be displayed with its base as the star attraction. The central spherical core and perfectly concentric shell-like layers are superb, looking like a cross section of a planet, and bejewelled with glassy Quartz crystals!

Strawberries and Cream: You will recall this is the traditional favourite for afternoon tea while watching the tennis. Why not indulge yourself in a superb crushed strawberry pink mammillary Rhodochrosite from the Oppu mine in Japan or candy-pink octahedral Fluorite crystals from Zinggenstöcke in Switzerland. Both scrummy and delicious.

A Bit of Fizz: Refresh your palate with a drop of Wimbledon Fizz, a single lustrous gemmy Topaz crystal from the Shigar Valley in northern Pakistan, the colour of light sparkling Champagne. Crisp, fresh and magnificent.

Championship Point: So there you have it, all 21 specimens covered and everyone a winner. But from winners, Champions must emerge and so the time draws near to choose your favourites…

Singles Trophies: The silver Venus Rosewater Dish is represented by a most charming piece of mineralogical history, a rare old red wax-sealed glass miniature bottle filled with metallic silver-grey grains of Native Iridium-Osmium, a natural alloy of these rare elements from the Urals Region of Russia. And for the Silver Gilt Cup (which is actually coloured gold), a handsome small miniature of bright metallic buttery Native Gold from Western Australia, wrapped around imbedded milky Quartz. In my opinion, just what a Gold specimen should look like!

So like all past Wimbledon Champions, hold your concentration, make no unforced errors and let play commence. Go for it, Game, Set and Match and perhaps you will end with a beautiful mineralogical trophy to place amongst past treasures already on display. PT

Here is what you have to look forward to in next week's update:

Tuesday 6th July & Friday 9th July - American Independence Day


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Author: JH
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