Description

    A PERFECT MATCH: EXCEEDINGLY RARE FLUORESCENT FLUORITE SPECIMEN AND A COMMON FLUORESCENT ORE PIECE
    Doña Anna Prospect, Cochise Co, Arizona
    Fluorite, an abundant fluorescent mineral species found worldwide, has been known to fluoresce in virtually every color of the spectrum, but by far the rarest colors are red and pink. This specimen is from the only locality that has produced significant, display-caliber pink-fluorescent fluorites and is probably the only locality for pink-fluorescent fluorite in the world. The mineral only responds with this color under shortwave ultraviolet rays; under longwave ultraviolet it responds with a typical and abundant bright blue-violet. Under the shortwave ultraviolent it glows a bright pastel pink, and this is likely the second best known specimen for this response and the only one of large-size display caliber, at 5 x 5 x 4 inches, with two display-worthy faces enlivened by a small veinlet of blue-white shortwave fluorescent scheelite in between. Other associated minor fluorescents on this piece under short-wave are dull green-fluorescent quartz and a small fluorescent spot of a weak yellow, most likely powellite or a different response of the quartz. Even small cabinet specimens (under 4 inches) of this pink-fluorescing fluorite are exceptionally rare - estimated at about 40 to 50 pieces in total - and only one larger museum-quality piece is known. Accompanying this exceptional specimen is a relatively mundane fluorescent specimen from the same prospect, but one which provides an important historical counterpoint to its world-class companion: fine blue-white fluorescing scheelite on a non-fluorsecent quartz matrix with veinlets of non-fluorescent mica, which are also the main matrix minerals of the world-class fluorescent fluorite. The brilliant fluorescence of the scheelite is somewhat muted in a pleasantly wispy cloudlike pattern that sweeps across the entire 6½ x 5½ x 3¼-inch matrix. Presumably, scheelite and feberite, a non-fluorescent, were the tungsten ore minerals at the small Doña Anna prospect, as no indications of any other potential ore minerals seem to be in evidence at the now worked-out site. And wispy veinlets of scheelite are virtually all that remain now since they have little ore value in small amounts; but a few small crystals and one step-formed parallel growth group of large crystals that were found there recently suggest that at least a limited amount of higher tenor ore was mined out of this prospect; it was probably the florescent of the sheelite which led to the discovery of the ore, and hence the discovery of this world-class fluorescent fluorite.

    Provenance: Ex Hugh Ronemus Collection


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    Auction Dates
    June, 2011
    12th Sunday
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