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Posted by Scott L. Ritchie  
Scott L. Ritchie August 08, 2012 08:03AM
Triphane was often used historically for any colored spodumene, that being any color that isn't purple or blue or green. We had this discussion years ago:,55,55716,page=2.

So, who changed it to only a synonym of spodumene? This really screws up allot of historic entries during ensuing auto merges, and managers should try discussing these changes first for input. It really doesn't serve any of us well here to confuse or confound existing reference entries based on a wild hare to right the wrongs of yesteryear. Hundreds of entries in San Diego County alone will have to be re-entered, which will take many hours of work... Obviously we should avoid using nebulous terms like triphane, which has been used both as a synonym and a descriptor for colored spodumene, but it should be preserved as a variety in the mindat database to distinguish and or preserve these historic entries.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/08/2012 12:36PM by Scott L. Ritchie.
Rock Currier August 08, 2012 09:39AM
The same mineral and mining related word can over the years can have several different meanings depending on who is using and defining the word. If you can come up with a definition for triphane and give the source of that definition, Ill add it to the triphane page and our glossary. As of now our glossary only has: Triphane, the same as spodumene: Standard, 1964 = Funk & Wagnalls Co. Funk & Wagnalls New Standard Dictionary of the English Language. New York, 1964, (Copyright 1963), 2816 pp.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
Pavel Martynov August 08, 2012 12:26PM
I am used to "triphane" only applied to yellow coloured spodumene. By the way, does anybody have information whether yellow triphanes are natural or their color is enhanced (heat or radiation)? Hiddenites are very often irradiated, what about triphanes?
Scott L. Ritchie August 08, 2012 12:32PM

I'm concerned about preserving the historic references in the database that list both 'triphane' and 'spodumene' at the same site. If you're telling me that keeping 'triphane' in the database as a variety on mindat is a problem, but 'cactus quartz' is a legitimate variety of quartz, I'm calling your bluff. winking smiley

Here is a Triphane reference for your glossary (emphasis mine):

"A very small proportion of the spodumene is unaltered, and appears as attractive transparent crystals and crystal fragments. Much of the material is the pale pink to deep bluish-lilac variety kunzite, much is the colorless to yellowish triphane, and a little is the green hiddenite."

Jahns, R. H. and Wright, L. A. (1951), Gem and Lithium-bearing pegmatites of the Pala District, San Diego County, California. California Division of Mines special report 7A: p. 37.

Jolyon & Katya Ralph August 08, 2012 01:13PM
Hey 3rd edition says Triphane is a synonym of spodumene, referencing Hauy from 1801 Traite Min 1st ed 4, 407. It may not be right but it's where we've taken a lot of our synonym info, and it was usually pretty good at distinguising synonyms from varieties.
Knut Edvard Larsen August 08, 2012 03:31PM
Historically the name "triphane" was introduced by Häuy in 1801 (Traité de minéralogie, Volum 4, as Jolyon points to above). Haüy suggested that the name "triphane" should replace the name "spodumene" already introduced by D'Andrada in 1800 for a mineral from Utö, Sweden. The name triphane was given due to the minerals characteristically threefold natural cleavages (in three directions), equally brilliant (name derived from the greek , triphanēs meaning appearing threefold).
It has originally nothing to do with colours.
Jolyon & Katya Ralph August 08, 2012 04:22PM
I think it needs to stay as a synonym. This is one of those names where different people over time have used it in different ways, and where it would be dangerous for us to assign a particular usage to it now as there is no formal definition of it as such.

So, if an old reference refers to triphane you can certainly add spodumene to the list and write "recorded as 'triphane'" in the notes, but it doesn't really tell us anything certain.

Scott L. Ritchie August 08, 2012 09:25PM

Okay, so hundreds of data entry fields have to be manually entered now because it's 'dangerous', but all the Triphane references from Jahns in Pala alone mean "colorless to yellow"... seems like a waste of time when the distinction was already made and explained (right or wrong).

So Cactus Quartz, Manifestation Quartz, Golden Healer Quartz, ad infinitum... these are worth having on mindat as varieties.... but so many years and people and labels using the term Triphane for colorless to yellow spodumene isn't?

Try keeping Triphane as a variety, and explain on the page that the meaning and use has changed over the years from a synonym to a variety, and is often used interchangeably... I have legitimate references, there are more... why not?

We have all this data on Triphane accumulated already on mindat that can be combined for the variety page description, why not educate and preserve the information?

At a minimum, none of what we have discussed over the years is even included on the current page for Triphane as a synonym, and it should be. The page currently looks horrible, two little fragments of a sentence, and no pictures... come on now... really?

Jolyon & Katya Ralph August 08, 2012 10:08PM
I would not be opposed to a Triphane (of XXXX) meaning colourless to yellow spodumene where XXX is the name of the author who first used it in this way.

But we have two uses of the name triphane. One is a straight synonym of spodumene (in all its forms and colours). The other isn't. The former probably takes precedence (we can't assume that in all old references when 'triphane' is discussed they mean colourless/yellow).

I agree the triphane page needs work.

Scott L. Ritchie August 09, 2012 11:13AM

I think allot of problems like this could be solved, perhaps, by allowing synonyms with references to be listed along with species and varieties on the locality pages, yet remain clearly noted as a synonym. This way the references don't automatically get rewritten as they are entered, which is often confusing, and old references are preserved; specific notes on the material being described in the reference can be added on a case by case basis over time, and visibly distinctive photos depicting the material described will still be viewable in their respective categories.

Rock Currier August 09, 2012 12:25PM
It is not my glossary, but mindat's glossary and we should all take responsibility for it and I think it should include as many definitions as might be useful. See what you think of the entries I have made.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
Uwe Kolitsch August 18, 2012 05:52PM
I had never heard of "triphane" before...
Ralph Bottrill August 18, 2012 11:23PM
I don't understand why triphane is in the glossary as well as the mineral list -this will get confusing. See for example emerald that has about 16 entries under "mineral" and a dozen in the glossary, mostly different, but they should be merged in "mineral".

I would agree that triphane is most commonly used nowdays as a variety, but as its also been used as a synonym, it means it's interpretation is going to be very suspect unless there are descriptions or photos to confirm the colour. Probably best to avoid the term, nothing wrong with calling something yellow spodumene. Though I suspect if it has not been described as Kunzite or hiddenite its mostly likely you could call it triphane unless it's a rare dark colour.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/19/2012 03:19AM by Ralph Bottrill.
Rob Woodside August 19, 2012 04:46AM
I have a blue one that will turn pink if exposed to light. So I guess it is a blue kunzitesmileys with beer
Erik Vercammen August 19, 2012 10:29AM
In "Elemente der Mineralogie, neunte, vermehrte und verbesserte auflage," 1874, dr Carl Naumann gives 'triphan' as a synonym for spodumene.
Tim Jokela Jr October 20, 2012 08:09PM
Death to pointless varietal names. Let triphane, kunzite, and hiddenite be stricken from the record, forevermore.

Or go the other way, and be fair about it. Sinkankas suggested there were about 1,000 different names for beryl. Dig them all up and treat them all as legit minerals.

And of course there are new names made up every year, so somebody will have to keep up on it, perhaps by buying the crystal power books or subscribing to the popular Faith Healing Monthly.
Rock Currier October 22, 2012 12:38PM
You are absolutely correct, and I now appoint you at the person in charge of buying all the new age books that come out and keeping up with all the new names they invent. I am sure all of us will appreciate your efforts, errr.... well perhaps not.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
Owen Lewis (2) October 22, 2012 02:33PM
I agree that 'Triphane' adds nothing useful to the lexicion.

Species = Spodumene. If pink then 'var Kunzite'. If emerald green showing a Chromium spectrum then ' var Hiddenite' - from wheresoever in the world it may come. If any other colour (including weak/muddy greens) then 'Spodumene'.
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