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Brian Kosnar's Photo Gallery

HXM-8QNAndradite Ca3Fe3+2(SiO4)3

Multiple photos available
Pampa Blanca District, Castrovirreyna Province, Huancavelica, Peru

Dimensions: 5.3 cm x 4.6 cm x 3.6 cm

5.3 x 4.6 x 3.6 cm

Starting last year (2018) one of our good friends in Peru came to us with a very small parcel of new, unusual and interesting andradite garnet specimens .We were told the locality was Pampa Blanca, but we have never received confirmation on this information. Apparently they were all collected by a few individuals over a couple days, and no more specimens have been found, so we may never seen them again. These pieces were called "coconuts" by the men who found them, as they form in hollow geode-like "balls", which are in turn cracked open to show that they formed in multiple generations/layers showing garnets of different colors. This piece is a partial coconut showing a dark reddish-brown exterior of trapezohedral garnet crystals - with the largest crystal measuring 1.1 cm across - and the broken edges show multi-layered banding with various hues of green, golden and brown. You can see the center of the piece hosts more golden-brown crystals, but there is also a small zone with yellow colored andradites (the largest measuring about 5 mm). The piece is contacted around the periphery, but there are several undamaged trapezohedral crystals all over. A bit of associated epidote and quartz can be seen on the outside for a nice touch.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001669     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 16   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)

TKK-LFFPyrite FeS2

Multiple photos available
Purple Hope No. 4 claim, Green Ridge, King Co., Washington, USA

Dimensions: 5.3 cm x 4.0 cm x 2.3 cm

5.3 x 4.0 x 2.3 cm

The classic pyrites from King County are often found in fine quality striated cubes and pyritohedra and typically associated with quartz. Recently a friend of ours discovered some really unusual yet attractive "etched"/skeletal crystals of pyrite with no matrix or associations at the Purple Hope No. 4 Claim (about 30 miles east of Seattle). These crystals were found as is - complete loose "floaters" in the pocket - and have not been altered in any way, other than washing the dirt off. I have to say of the many thousands of pieces of pyrite we've seen, nothing like this has really come our way before. Our friend said that this locality is the only one to produce pyrites like this anywhere in King County. The debate rages as to how they formed. Are they the result of a solitary solution etching that only partially etched the crystals, or if the pyrites possibly transitioned into marcasite that later dissolved away, leaving the pyrite behind, or something else entirely different. This beautiful small cabinet example has brilliant metallic golden faces on every side, and even shows some basic cubic growth lines in the midst of the graceful etching patterns.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001665     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 10   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)

GF8-NP8Microlite Group A2-mTa2X6-wZ-n

Multiple photos available
Ipê mine, Governador Valadares, Minas Gerais, Brazil

Dimensions: 5.7 cm x 4.8 cm x 4.2 cm

5.7 x 4.8 x 4.2 cm

A wonderfully rich specimen of classic microlite crystals from a find in the 1980s at the Ipê mine in Brazil. The piece hosts hundreds of tiny (it's called microlite for a reason) sparkling, strong golden-orange colored crystals that can be seen all over. The piece has a somewhat layered formation to the matrix, but the piece is notably dense for the size, so perhaps the crystals grew on a partial crystal of a niobate or tantalate species like columbite or tantalite. I realize the crystals are small, but there are so many of them to be seen. Obviously it's best to view the piece under magnification, but they do measure up to 2.5 mm, so you can see some with the naked eye. The quality is very good for the species, as you will see there are many textbook microlites on this specimen. This piece is labeled as Microlite Group because microlite is no longer a valid species. It's possible that this piece could be fluorcalciomicrolite, but it hasn't been analyzed.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001660     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 9   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)

07R-T2YVivianite Fe2+3(PO4)2·8H2O

Multiple photos available
Mullica Hill, Harrison Township, Gloucester Co., New Jersey, USA

Dimensions: 8.2 cm x 1.5 cm x 1.0 cm

8.2 x 1.5 x 1.0 cm

These fossils from the phosphate locality at Mullica Hill in New Jersey are fairly well-known to locals, but they're still quite rare on the market. This locality is not anywhere near the famous Franklin Mining District or the Trap Rocks of the Watchung Mountains; it lies much further south about 25 miles from Philadelphia. These specimens came out decades ago, and are quite desirable for collectors. Mullica Hill is known for phosphate species, but perhaps the best known specimens are these eye-catching replacements/pseudomorphs featuring crystals of vivianite after marine animals. This elongated, tubular specimen hosts dark greenish-black crystals of vivianite that have replaced a belemnite fossil. The quality of the vivianite crystals is pretty good for the locality as they do show some luster, which is not common as many can be dull and unattractive. For more information, please see the article about Mullica Hill, New Jersey in Min. Rec. 9-10/1980.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001655     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 12   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)

DP8-KRHQuartz (Var: Ametrine) SiO2

Multiple photos available
Anahi Mine, La Gaiba mining district, Sandoval Province, Santa Cruz, Bolivia

Dimensions: 11.1 cm x 8.7 cm x 1.3 cm

11.1 x 8.7 x 1.3 cm

Quartz is one of those species that occurs in virtually every color of the rainbow, and probably has more varieties than any other species. With that said, one of the most striking and instantly recognizable varieties is ametrine. These beautiful crystals feature a combination of natural purple and yellow quartz which led to the name ametrine = AMEthyst + ciTRINE. The color sections are found on opposing rhombohedral faces of the quartz typically in triangular sections. When the ametrine crystals are sliced across the "c" axis, you can see the classic "pinwheel" or "radiation" pattern like we see in this polished slice. The piece has excellent color saturation along with good internal gemminess. It is important to note that this is the only place in the world where these classic examples are found. These crystals are only mined at the Anahi Mine in the eastern Bolivian jungle (not Brazil like many people believe). For what it's worth, our source in Bolivia told us that there has been little production in recent years. This is a wonderful representation of this classic material. The specimen weight is 276.05 grams.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001649     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 3   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)

KCF-RDFCopper Cu

Multiple photos available
Corocoro, Pacajes Province, La Paz, Bolivia

Dimensions: 8.7 cm x 6.6 cm x 1.3 cm

8.7 x 6.6 x 1.3 cm

I think most people are familiar with the unique copper pseudomorphs after aragonite from Corocoro, but it's rare to find non-pseudomorphic, crystalline native copper like this. This piece was mined in 2011 and is a unique, eye-catching, aesthetic, "fan"-like "leaf"-shaped specimen. I've been looking at pieces from Corocoro for decades, and I have never seen copper specimens like this. I've shown them to people who all have different reactions, some people say they resemble some form of aquatic sea life, like coral, and I've even heard them compared to gingko leaves. I've been told that the locality was recently purchased by a Korean mining company with the intention of melting down every bit of copper found, so collecting and obtaining specimens will become very difficult in the future.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001645     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 6   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)

NX8-574Fluorite CaF2

Multiple photos available
Denton Mine, Harris Creek Mining Sub-District, Hardin Co., Illinois, USA

Dimensions: 6.1 cm x 4.5 cm x 4.2 cm

6.1 x 4.5 x 4.2 cm

A wonderful small cabinet fluorite from the Denton Mine. A good sized, sharp, lustrous, well-formed gemmy golden color cube transitions into etched light purple color fluorite on the outer edges. The sides and back of the piece are actually crystallized (or re-crystallized), so the piece is nearly a complete "floater", save a spot on the base where it was removed from the pocket wall. It's fascinating to see that the golden section of the crystal is virtually water-clear while the lilac areas are translucent. A few minor golden chalcopyrite crystals make for a nice touch to this attractive specimen from this historic mining district. From the collection of Ross Lillie (# RCL0175) and his label states that it was self-collected on May 9, 1984 in the "first specimen pocket in the new orebody". I have to say that at first glance, the piece made me think of similar looking examples from the Elmwood Mine in Tennessee. The combination of the golden and lilac hues along with the hydrothermal etching are certainly characteristic from Elmwood, but the association of chalcopyrite immediately makes it from Southern Illinois.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001642     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 7   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)

GLF-NFPSpinel MgAl2O4

Multiple photos available
Mogok Valley, Mogok Township, Pyin-Oo-Lwin District, Mandalay Region, Myanmar

Dimensions: 0.6 cm x 0.5 cm x 0.4 cm

0.6 x 0.5 x 0.4 cm to 0.3 x 0.3 x 0.3 cm

Spinels from Mogok are truly some of the most iconic representations of a particular species from a single locality. The crystals from this area have been mined for centuries, and still remain as the finest crystallized red examples of the species extant. The vast majority of the spinels from Mogok are found as single loose octahedral crystals, but a small percentage are actually twinned. This form became synonymous with the species, and was named the "Spinel-Law" twinning habit. Here is a 10 crystal set of both single octahedral crystals and "Spinel-Law" twins which range in color from a pinkish-red to a deep blood red hue. The smaller crystals tend to have sharper more lustrous faces, but the larger ones have more saturated color.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001630     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 19   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)

M8R-ECECalcite CaCO3

Multiple photos available
St Andreasberg, Braunlage, Goslar, Lower Saxony, Germany

Dimensions: 8.3 cm x 3.4 cm x 3.2 cm

8.3 x 3.4 x 3.2 cm

Calcites from St Andreasberg are some of the most iconic and classic specimens from the locality. They certainly have resonated throughout the centuries in Europe as some of the most well-known examples of the species. This highly aesthetic small cabinet specimen hosts sharp, translucent, tabular "poker chip"-like crystals of white calcite measuring up to 2.1 cm flaring off all sides of the elongated matrix. The piece is around 150 years old. From the collection of Leigh Price, formerly of Evergreen, Colorado.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001622     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 11   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)

KNU-QWCFluorite CaF2

Multiple photos available
Xianghuapu Mine, Xianghualing Sn-polymetallic ore field, Linwu Co., Chenzhou, Hunan, China

Dimensions: 9.3 cm x 7.8 cm x 6.1 cm

9.3 x 7.8 x 6.1 cm

The Xianghuapu Mine is one of the most famous fluorite producers in China and has become renowned for its amazing gemmy green crystals. This piece features predominantly cubic fluorites, which are notably gemmy, with sharp, smooth faces. The largest fluorite measures 2.7 cm on edge, but if you look closely you can see that these cubes are actually growing on top of a previous generation of green fluorite composed of highly modified groups in octahedral orientations. The back of the piece has a thin selective deposition of sugary white quartz that creates a lovely contrast that actually grew between the times of the two fluorite generations.
Copyright: © Brian Kosnar - Mineral Classics      Photo ID: 1001615     Uploaded by: Brian Kosnar   View Count: 6   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 1800 x 1800 pixels (3.2 Mpix)
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