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Beryl var: Aquamarine

Posted by Harjo Neutkens  
avatar Beryl var: Aquamarine
April 26, 2011 08:43PM
Click here to view Beryl, here for Beryl var: Emerald, here for Beryl var: Red Beryl, here for Beryl var: Morganite, here for Beryl var: Heliodor, here for Beryl var: Goshenite, here for Best Minerals B, here for Best Minerals A to Z and here for Fast Navigation of completed Best Minerals articles.

Can you help make this a better article? What good localities have we missed? Can you supply pictures of better specimens than those we show here? Can you give us more and better information about the specimens from these localities? Can you supply better geological or historical information on these localities?

A variety of Beryl Be3Al2Si6O18 Hexagonal

Aquamarine, 18,3cm tall. Haramosh Mountains, Pakistan

Aquamarine derives its name from the Latin name Aqua Marina, meaning "Sea Water", because of it's splendid blue colour.
The colour can come in many shades of blue; light blue, deep blue, green-blue, and many shades in between. The colour is caused by trivalent Iron (Fe3+) and/or divalent Iron (Fe2+) occupying different positions in the lattice structure.
The habit of Aquamarine varies from needles through elongated prisms to tabular habits. Crystals can be found free-standing in vugs or embedded in host rock, sometimes as parallel grown or radial aggregates.
Aquamarines can be found in pegmatite occurrences, Alpine-type clefts, pneumatolythic occurrences and alluvial gem gravels.
The size of the crystals ranges from micro crystals of less then a mm, up to crystals in excess of 100kg. The largest cut gems weigh over a 1000ct.

AquamarineAfghanistanKonar Province, Chapa Dara District, Dara-i-Pech pegmatite field

Aquamarine, 4cm
Aquamarine 4,4cm

Be-Nb-Ta-Li-rich pegmatites, hosted in a variety of lithologies. There are two types of pegmatites found within the ore field: (1) large albitized microcline pegmatites with beryl, and (2) spodumene-albite pegmatites with complex Li-Be mineralization.

Pech, Peech and Dara-i-Pech (also spelled Darra-i-Pech, Darrah Pech, and sometimes Page) are the same place. "Dara" means "valley", so in English the location name is "Pech Valley". Likewise, specimens labelled as coming from Dara-i-Pech do not necessarily come from this pegmatite field, but may originate from any place in the Pech valley. This area icludes Chapa Dara, Dara-i-Pech, Wata Pur and Asadabad Districts in Konar Province, as well as Wama District in Nuristan Province.
Further note that many Afghanis will still use the name "Nuristan" in a traditional sense, to mean all of northeastern Afghanistan. This traditional meaning of the place name "Nuristan" is not to be confused with the current Nuristan Province, which covers only a portion of "Nuristan" in the traditional sense. Moreover, there also exists a Nuristan District, which covers a minor part of southern Nuristan Province.

AquamarineAfghanistanLaghman Province (Lagman Province; Nuristan)

Aquamarine, 3,7cm
Aquamarine 3,2cm

NOTE: Nuristan province sensu stricto became officially recognised in 2001 (wikipedia) or 2004 (, but was already known for 10 years. It was formed from the northern parts of Laghman Province and Konar (Kunar) Province.
The capital of the Nuristan Province is Nuristan.
"Nuristan" is also the traditional name for the region that encompasses these three current provinces (i.e., NE Afghanistan) and the name is still often used in that fashion.

AquamarineArgentinaCórdoba, Dumesnil, La Esperanza Quarry

Aquamarine, 3,4cm
Aqua, 3,6cm

Locality for nice etched Aquamarine crystals.

AquamarineAustraliaNew South Wales, Clive Co., Torrington

Aquamarine, 3,8cm
Aquamarine, 3,8cm

There are over 35 Beryl occurrences in Torrington-Emmaville districts of the New England region, and many fine Beryl specimens have been mined since its discovery in the 1890's (whilst prospecting for tin, bismuth and tungsten).
Beryl crystals up to 30cm have been found, sometimes in excellent quality.

AquamarineAustraliaNorthern Territory, Harts Ranges (Hartz Ranges), Harding Springs

Aquamarine, 14cm
Aquamarine, 6cm

Pegmatite district, with pegmatites originally mined for mica. Beryl crystals over 30cm in length have been reported.

AquamarineAustriaCarinthia, Hohe Tauern, Reißeck group, Pusarnitz, Hintereggengraben

Crystals up to 0,5cm
Aquamarine xls 0,5cm

The mountain ridge between Böser Nase and Hochegg in Hintereggengraben which has become famous because of its excellent Sceptre Quartzes is also known as location for nice Aquamarine crystals. The numerous alpine clefts in that region mostly produce Smoky Quartz together with black Tourmaline needles. Sometimes but very rarely a cleft also has some tiny Aquamarine crystals that are often not seen by the collectors.

AquamarineAustriaSalzburg, Hohe Tauern Mts, Felben valley, Scheelite deposit, Western ore field

Aquamarine, 3,4cm
Aquamarine, 1,97cm

Scheelite deposit, currently mined underground. Strikingly deep blue Aquamarines have been found, usually accompanied by Molybdenite and Scheelite.

AquamarineAustriaSalzburg, Hohe Tauern Mts, Hollersbach and Habach valleys, Schafkopf/Breitkopf Mts area

Aquamarine, 6cm
Aquamarine, 1cm

Aquamarine in clefts in Gneisses, or Aquamarine in masses of smoky Quartz veins.

AquamarineBrazilBahia, Guaratinga (Jaquetô)

Aqua, 4,7cm
Aquamarine, 1,5cm
Aquamarine, 4,7cm
Aquamarine, 18cm

In 1990 a pocket was found containing approximately 100kg of very fine blue-green crystals, showing negative corrosion patterns, and with pencil like terminations

AquamarineBrazilEspírito Santo, Mimoso do Sul, Mimoso do Sul Mine

Specimen 9x5cm
Specimen 4,8cm

Concordia mine exploits the main pegmatite. In 1990 very nice single crystals and excellent clusters composed of tapered prisms.

AquamarineBrazilMinas Gerais, Doce Valley

Aquamarine 3cm
Aquamarine 7cm
Specimen 17,2cm
Aqua 8,4cm

Several pegmatites have produced large Beryl crystals, sometimes with water-clear "eyes" inside of them. In 1992 an Aquamarine crystal measuring 1x0,5 meters, weighing 400kg, showing a perfect termination. It now resides in the Kanagawa Prefecture Museum in Tokyo, Japan.

AquamarineBrazilMinas Gerais, Jequitinhonha valley

Aquamarine 8cm and 5,5cm
Aquamarine 5,5 and 7,6cm
Aquamarine 3cm
Aquamarine 6cm
Aquamarine 4,5cm
Aquamarine 4,5cm
Aquamarine 16,2cm
Aqua 6,5cm
Aquamarine 24,5cm
Aqua 4,7cm

The Serinha deposit has produced important quantities of gem grade Aquamarine. In 1998, a small unnamed pegmatite in the area produced some of the world's best Aquamarine crystals. Clear, blue prismatic crystals up to 30cm in length, with pencil-like terminations.

AquamarineBrazilMinas Gerais, Medina

Aquamarine 21,1cm
Aquamarine 5,2cm


AquamarineBrazilMinas gerais, Mucuri valley, Teófilo Otoni

Aquamarine 12,3cm
Aquamarine 5,3cm


AquamarineBurma (Myanmar)Mandalay Division, Sagaing District, Mogok

Aquamarine 2,7cm
Aquamarine 5,1cm


AquamarineChinaSichuan Province, Mianyang Prefecture, Pingwu Co., Mt Xuebaoding

Specimen 6,5x4,3cm
Specimen 18,5x11cm
Specimen 10x6,6cm
Specimen 3x3cm
Aquamarine 1,3cm
Specimen 5,x4,2cm


AquamarineChinaYunnan Province, Nujiang Autonomous Prefecture, Gaoligong Mts (Gaoligong Shan)

Specimen 8x6cm
Specimen 2,9x2,7cm

Highlands west of the Nu river (Nu Jiang) valley.
Located in northwestern Yunnan Province, close to the border to Myanmar (Burma).

AquamarineIndiaTamil Nadu

Emperor of India 32x16cm
Aquamarine 5cm


AquamarineItalyLombardy, Sondrio Province, Novate Mezzola, Codera Valley

Aquamarine 5cm

Important Alpine locality for excellent Aquamarine crystals.

AquamarineItalyTrentino-Alto Adige, Bolzano Province (South Tyrol), Vizze Valley (Pfitsch Valley), Griesferner glacier

Aquamarine spray 0,7cm
Aquamarine 1cm

Locality for Alpine cleft Aquamarine.

AquamarineItalyTuscany, Livorno Province, Elba Island, Campo nell'Elba, San Piero in Campo, Grotta d'Oggi Quarry

Aquamarine 0,5cm
Aquamarine 2cm

This is the old quarry from where a lot of the best elbaites and tourmalines from Isola Elba, Italy, have been recovered during the 19th century.
Located near a magnesite quarry, was opened in 1825.

AquamarineItalyTuscany, Lucca Province, Apuan Alps, Stazzema, Ponte Stazzemese, Buca della Vena Mine

Aquamarine 3cm
Aquamarine 0,6cm

The Buca della Vena mine was exploited for barite and Fe-oxides up to 1988. The mineralization is hosted within two carbonatic lenses of dolomitic metalimestones of Upper Triassic age (Grezzoni formation) and marble of Liassic age (Marble formation), interbedded with lenses of phyllites. The ore body and the hosted rocks show evidences of deformations which have been referred to a first compressive tectonic phase dating back 26 m.y.. Measured homogenization temperature in beryl crystals from the ore body ranged from 250° to 340° C, in good agreement with the metamorphic grade of the area (greenschist facies).
Carmignani et al. (1972, 1976) considered this deposit to be a metasomatic replacement of carbonate rocks, genetically connected to a hypothetical synkinematic intrusive body.
According to Cortecci et al. (1985), on the other hand, on the basis of isotope analysis of sulfates and sulfides, concluded that the deposit is sedimentary in origin and was subsequently metamorphosed and partly remobilized during the Tertiary Appenninic orogeny.

AquamarineKazakhstanKaragandy Province (Qaragandy Oblysy; Karaganda Oblast'), Ortau

Aquamarine 1,3cm
Aquamarine 2,6cm


AquamarineMadagascarFianarantsoa Province, Atsimo-Atsinanana Region, Befotaka District

Aquamarine 7,7cm

Up to 7,7 cm x 4,1 cm gemmy beryl (variety aquamarine) crystals was reported in 2009 from an undisclosed pegmatite in the Befotaka district by Spirifer minerals.

AquamarineMongoliaHutag Ull Ord

Aquamarine 6,5cm
Aquamarine 4,3cm

Be-pegmatites in northern Mongolia.

AquamarineMozambiqueZambezia Province, Alto Ligonha District

Aquamarine 2,5cm
Aquamarine 3cm

Nb-Ta pegmatite district.

AquamarineNamibiaErongo Region

Aquamarine 1,2cm

The Erongo is the largest of the late-mesozoic alkaline complexes of central-west Namibia. Situated on the fringes of the Namib Desert between Usakos and Omaruru, rising to 2319m and 40km diameter.
Very nice Aquamarine crystals have been found in the region, especially at Erongo Mountain, Davib East Farm, Klein Spitzkopje and Tubussis Farm. Also very nice combo specimens of Aquamarine with Schorl and sometimes Fluorite have been found.

AquamarineNepalMechi Zone, Taplejung District, Mechi Zone

Aquamarine, Muscovite 8cm
Aquamarine etc 9cm
Aquamarine, Albite 9,5cm

Info needed

AquamarineNigeriaPlateau State, Jos Plateau

Aquamarine 3,5cm
Aquamarine 5cm


AquamarinePakistanGilgit-Baltistan (Northern Areas), Skardu District

Aquamarine, Albite 5,5cm
Aquamarine, Albite14cm
Aquamarine 32,5cm
Aquamarine, Albite 16cm
Aquamarine 6cm
Aquamarine 18,3cm
Aquamarine 8,6cm
Aquamarine 6,9cm
Aquamarine 5,6cm
Aquamarine 6cm
Aquamarine 6cm


AquamarinePakistanGilgit-Baltistan (Northern Areas), Gilgit District

Aquamarine, Apatite, Muscovite 7cm
Aquamarine, Muscovite 14,2cm
Aquamarine 8cm
Aquamarine, Apatite, Muscovite 18,4cm
Aquamarine 10cm
Aquamarine, Fluorite 25cm
Aquamarine 11cm
Aquamarine 14cm
Aquamarine 8,2cm


AquamarinePortugalViseu District, Sátão, Ferreira de Aves, Aldeia Nova, Assunção Mine


Pegmatite mine known for exceptionally large, up to 2 metres tall, Aquamarine crystals.

AquamarineRussiaEastern-Siberian Region, Transbaikalia (Zabaykalye), Chitinskaya Oblast', Nerchinsk (Nertschinsk), Nerchinsk Gem mines, Adun-Chilon Range

Aquamarine, Quartz 5,5cm
Aquamarine 8,5cm
Aquamarine 10cm


AquamarineRussiaUrals Region, Middle Urals, Sverdlovskaya Oblast', Sarapulka District (Murzinka), Murzinka Mine (Mursinsk; Murzinsk; Murzinska)

Aquamarine, Quartz 9,7cm
Aquamarine 3,2cm

Famous granite pegmatite district. Labels may be using very old information and specimens with the locality information may be for specimens actually from Alabashka in the north to Sarapulsk to the south (Scalisi and Cook, 1983).

AquamarineSpainExtremadura, Badajoz, Valle de la Serena, Osa Quarry

Aquamarine 8cm
Aquamarine 1,1cm


AquamarineUnited KingdomNorthern Ireland, Co. Down, Mourne Mts.

Aquamarine 5cm
Aquamarine 4,3cm


Work in progress

Edited 135 time(s). Last edit at 10/09/2014 04:53PM by Debbie Woolf.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
April 27, 2011 07:16AM
You have taken on a big project here. I wish you good fortune in its progress which I shall watch with interest.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
April 27, 2011 10:57AM
Thanks Rock.
It will take some time, in between I still have to play some concerts, and next weekend I have CD recordings.
But every now and then I'll add some stuff to the article.


avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
November 19, 2011 10:56PM
HOLY SMOKES! Amazing. I wish I could contribute something comparable!

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/19/2011 11:00PM by John Montgomery.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
November 20, 2011 02:22AM
Here are three images of the new aquamarines from Huanggang Mine, Hexigten Banner (Keshiketeng Co.), Ulanhad League (Chifeng Prefecture), Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, China.

Unlike most other aquamarines which tend to be found in workings exploiting pegmatites, these come from an iron mine exploiting a skarn body. There have been a very small quantity of single crystals, usually double terminated, and most display lighter blue rinds with deeper blue cores (see third image). There have been an even smaller number of clusters, and I have only seen (but I have no pictures) about 2 matrix pieces, though the crystals tend to be very narrow, often broken, and are not much to look at....
open | download - guanggang1.JPG (64 KB)
open | download - huanggang2.JPG (40.6 KB)
open | download - IMG_7281.JPG (57.2 KB)
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
November 21, 2011 05:17AM
At least one of those images will most likely make its way into the best minerals article, but you will have to first upload them officially to the Mindat Image gallery. Do you know how to do this? Would you like me to point you to some instructions that will explain how to do this in detail? Do you understand why this should be done rather than giving them here as just an attachment to a message?

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
November 21, 2011 05:18AM
Bill, Ill bet Harjo will put at least one of your images into the article.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
November 21, 2011 06:51AM
Of course!
As soon as I get to the USA section Chris' Sawtooth photos will get a prominent place.
I haven't had a lot of time to work on the article (too many concerts) but I think I can resume working on it halfway December.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
May 20, 2012 05:58PM

Although the Aquamarine specimen is the smallest piece in my collection it is still one of my favorites. It is an alpine one that I collected in Hintereggengraben, Carinthia. With a length of 0,5cm the crystal is probably too small for your article but its color and terminations are so phantastic that I have to show it to you.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/20/2012 06:01PM by Rudolf Hasler.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
May 21, 2012 12:32PM
We generally only use images that show the entire specimen. Also your aqua appears to be be taken with UV light? We would need a picture with regular lighting. Occasionally we will also use a UV image of the same specimen to accompany the one with regular light.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
May 21, 2012 03:49PM
I have taken a new picture of the aqua just now. I never use UV light. It is the real incredible color that makes that tiny piece to one of my favorites. Some years ago I was offered an unbelievable amount of money for such a tiny thing by a local collector.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/21/2012 05:08PM by Rudolf Hasler.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
May 22, 2012 10:16AM
Ill leave it up to Harjo if he wants to use your beryl image in his article.

I put it into photoshop and lightened up the image some, but did not change the image you up loaded. Here is your image:

and here is the image that I lightened up in Photoshop.

I think the images I see on my monitor are darker than on other monitors. How do they look on your monitor. Which one looks better?

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
open | download - Beryl, Austria1.jpg (401.6 KB)
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
May 22, 2012 01:38PM
On my monitor the 1st (my) image looks better. I am not an expert on PCs at all but could it be that you have to adjust the color settings?

avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
May 22, 2012 03:16PM
Na klar soll der drinne winking smiley
It's already in the article. Beautiful find!
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
May 22, 2012 07:16PM
Danke, Harjo!
I am happy that you put that one into the article as it is a real favorite of me.
That it does not stand there alone I have added another pic and some information.
I hope you do not mind.



Edited 8 time(s). Last edit at 11/27/2012 04:16AM by Rudolf Hasler.
avatar Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
March 31, 2014 10:16PM
Dear friends,

Many, many things came in between, but I finally found the courage to continue the Aquamarine article smiling smiley
Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
April 01, 2014 12:47AM

DT Crystal 2.7 cm Wide, 2.23 cm Deep, 10.16 cm Tall
open | download - AQUAMARINE(Jaqueto Mine, Brazil).jpg (24.7 KB)
Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
April 01, 2014 12:54AM

3.81 cm Wide, 3.175 cm Deep, 13.97 cm Tall
Jeff Scovil photo.
open | download - AQUAMARINE(Shigar Valley, Pakistan).jpg (150.2 KB)
Re: Beryl var: Aquamarine
April 01, 2014 12:59AM

4.45 cm Wide, 3.18 cm Deep, 8.26 cm Tall
open | download - AQUAMARINE(Bulochi, Pakistan 1B).jpg (70.9 KB)

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