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Dutch Banquet

Content image: Dutch Banquet

Working with old collections will often throw up unexpected snippets of information, "factoids", or link to some other part of a mineralogical jigsaw.

Recently spotted stowed away in Norman Cogger's collection was a specimen of "Gold", Banket Ore; a piece of conglomerate white quartz cemented together with further dark sulphide bearing quartz, but no visible gold!

Having now researched this term, Banket ore does indeed refer to a type of quartz conglomerate found mostly in the reefs at Witwatersrand in what was the Transvaal.

I have come across the formation type before, not the term, which I now understand is from the Dutch language where Banket is a type of almond cake.

The white of the quartz is said to represent the almonds within this bake.

The term Banket is believed to have in turn derived from the word Banquet or feast. I guess quite apt for an ore bearing gold in some quantity!

Out of interest there is an old gold mining centre called Banket near Chinhoyi in Zimbabwe, and the term is used still further afield for this type of formation in gold mining.

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