New Wedding Bells Update 05 August 2022

5 August 2022

TODAY’S selection of minerals celebrates the wedding tomorrow of Georgie Boyer, daughter to our very own Debbie. Debbie, our office manager here in Somerset, is one of Crystal Classics’ most familiar faces at mineral shows around the world. I know all our friends and customers will be wishing them both well for the Big Day!

Miss Georgie, soon née Boyer, in addition to her bevy of bridesmaids will be ably supported by her son, Joshua, acting as page boy and ring bearer and a certain Miss Annabella Bruce as flower girl. As you can picture, a beautiful dress awaits two-year-old Annabella for the big occasion, yet so far she steadfastly refuses to wear it, preferring an ensemble of tee shirt and shorts accessorised with swimming goggles and blue wellies as her outfit of choice! Georgie, the most effervescent and caring girl you could wish to meet, will be tying the knot with Richard in their local family church in beautiful Dorset; the county famous for its Jurassic Coast and Liassic fossils. We wish them a wonderful day and a lifetime of health and happiness.

If I were the groom I’d have compiled a Wedding List featuring today’s selection; a ready-made list for the guests to choose from and items all more essential than a toaster, bath towels or set of placemats. Mind you, if the latter featured photos of choice specimens, I may well be tempted!

To celebrate the white wedding, we feature mostly white minerals, yet all very different. Also included is the odd hint of blue to mirror the bridesmaid’s dresses and a splash of pink, Georgie’s favourite colour. Let’s begin the ceremony with the purest white of all, a fantastic Natrolite from Magheramorne quarry in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. As an aside, this quarry at Larne was occupied with one of the larger film sets during the making of HBO’s TV series ‘Game of Thrones’. Composed entirely of the zeolite Natrolite, silky, inwardly radiating acicular needles form a 1.5 to 2 cm thick geode, the centre of which contains a 4.0 x 2.5 cm vug. Even the outer surface of the nodule has an excellent 1.5 cm diameter Natrolite spray. It’s a beautiful cabinet specimen and you will never see a cleaner example of Natrolite.

Today’s specimens range from miniature to large cabinet, the contender for the latter being a magnificent Baryte with Quartz from the Jinkouhe District in Sichuan Province, China. Covering a 21 x 18 cm plate, the Baryte forms superb rhombohedral crystals of up to 5.8 cm, from 1 to 1.3 cm thick. All such crystals are perfectly developed with crisp edges and range from transparent to translucent. The Quartz is colourless and gemmy, forming slender, acicular crystals up to about 3 cm long and all tending to lie slightly flattened, yet well-proud of the matrix. Under LWUV both the Baryte and Quartz fluoresce pale white. Not so large, but equally impressive, is a superb Danburite, a calcium-boron silicate from Charcas in San Luis Potosí, Mexico. The Danburite forms a spiky cluster of vertical and outwardly pointing crystals up to 5.5 cm long, all with chisel-tipped terminations with the lustre of polished glass. Under LWUV the entire specimen fluoresces mild cream.

The bridesmaids are in dressed in a symphony of blue, marked here with stunning examples of Topaz, Pentagonite and Fluorite. Topaz is an aluminium silicate gem mineral and this gorgeous miniature is a captivating cornflower ice-blue, from Murzinka mine in the Prigorodny District of the Middle Urals. The crystal is crisply terminated with sharp edges and the prism faces are lustrous and smooth; some with an attractive waxy lustre. Pentagonite is dimorphous with Cavansite and this amazing specimen is from the famed Wagholi quarries in Maharashtra, India. Deep cyan-electric blue Pentagonite forms a sculptural display of crystals with an overall height of 3.9 cm. The vivid blue crystals display to perfection against a background of glassy, white micro-crystals of Stilbite covering a basalt matrix. Our third and final touch of blue is delivered by a true west Cumbrian English classic, blue Fluorite with buttermilk-cream Dolomite crystals from Ullcoats mine at Egremont. This blue gemmy crystal group includes a crust of small, iron-stained, translucent red Fluorite cubes over their back faces, imparting a brick red tinge to their transparent sky blue interiors.

Other white wedding specimens include a truly beautiful colourless to milky white Calcite from Gyöngyösoroszi in Heves County, Hungary; Quartz with Dolomite from the Trepča Complex in Kosovo and a lovely domed Calcite cluster from Príbram in the Czech Republic. Two very different Calcites, both from St. Andreasberg in Lower Saxony, are well worth a closer look. One is a large, sharply formed Calcite crystal with a pseudohexagonal habit on Galena, the other a honeycomb-like structure of intergrown lenticular crystals up to 3 cm wide.

I promised to include pink. The most shocking pink is that of a superbly rich Ephesite from the seldom encountered Postmasburg Manganese Field in Northern Cape Province, South Africa. Ephesite is a rare mica silicate and this small cabinet specimen displays several crystal habits of deep fuchsia pink, principally as scalenohedral double terminated prisms and hexagonal prisms with chamfered edges. We also include two Rhodochrosites; one from Cavnic in Romania and one on Sphalerite with Pyrite and Galena from Trepča.

Let’s conclude with the perfect combination for the bride-to-be… a pink blushed glittering clear-white Calcite from west Cumbria. Labelled Frizington, somewhat rounded, scalenohedral crystals up to 1.5 cm tall with nail head terminations cover an approximately 11 x 6 cm convex, shell-like band of limonitic-Hematite matrix. The Calcite crystals along the back edge of the top are tinted pinkish-red by Hematite inclusions. The opposite side forms a geode with a similar, yet concave, Calcite crystal-lined 8 x 3 cm cavity, of equally good quality to the display face.

Luckily, Britain’s current heatwave continues and so the sun will be shining down on Georgie and Richard tomorrow when they announce, “I do”. I am reliably informed both Debbie and Georgie are busy today at the rural reception venue addressing matters such as place cards, favours and where to park a small fleet of farm tractors which will escort the newlyweds after the church ceremony! We wish the wedding party and yourselves a wonderful weekend, although you now have to disengage from wedding matters and concentrate on minerals. Enjoy! PT.

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

Tuesday 9th August & Friday 12th August - World

                             

If you'd like to see a video of any of the specimens listed above then please contact us at orders@crystalclassics.co.uk 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.

 

EAST COAST GEM, MINERAL & FOSSIL SHOW 2022

We return to West Springfield, Massachusetts for the East Coast Gem, Mineral & Fossil Show which takes place on Friday, August 12 through to Sunday, August 14. Admission for the show is $10.00 (Under 13 free with adult) and Crystal Classics will be located at space 129 in the shows retail section. Doors open 10am-6pm on Friday and Saturday and 10am-5pm for the Sunday.

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Author: JH, PT
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