DescriptionSUPER PHOSPHORESCENT "RADIATING" WILLEMITE
Franklin, Sussex Co, New Jersey
This specimen is the type of Willemite that is considered the very best and most desirable type of the mineral, next to the more euhedral forms (see Lot 49008). It is the rare and somewhat legendary "radiating" Willemite, probably the most phosphorescent natural Willemite known, as well as a very rare semi-crystallized form. It gets its "radiating" moniker from the round fans of radiating, needle-like crystals, which can measure up to a few inches across in the most exceptional specimens. These are not terminated crystals but are found in thin veins in a very select few small occurrences at Franklin and Sterling Hill in New Jersey. Perhaps the biggest appeal of these "radiators" is their super phosphorescence, the property of continuing to emit light for extremely long periods of time after the exciting rays of ultraviolet have been removed. The Willemite fluoresces brilliant green under shortwave UV, and phosphoresces the same color so intensely that with dark-adapted eyes, the phosphorescence has been observed in this sort of specimen up to three days after UV exposure. Yet more incredibly, instruments have detected this phosphorescence years after UV exposure. The present specimen measures 3¾ x 2 x 1½ inches (9.5 x 5 x 3.8 cm) and has an exposed surface of yellowish radiating crystals measuring about 2 inches (5 cm) long by 1 inch (2.5 cm) wide, showing minimal divergence in the crystals, making one wonder just how big a complete "eye" might have been. Surrounding this surface is a non-fluorescent area containing two thinner veinlets of radiating Willemite, while the matrix is red fluorescing Calcite, containing grains and stringers of fluorescing Willemite and non-fluorescent black Franklinite, all arranged with the utmost natural artistry - a truly fascinating, beautiful, and very rare Franklin fluorescent specimen.
Provenance: ex. Hugh Ronemus Collection
Condition report available upon request.
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