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Sphalerite

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MGR813568

Sphalerite

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Description
Locality: 
Las Manforas Mine, Camaleño, Cantabria, Spain
Class: 
Crystals on Matrix
Size Range: 
Small cabinet (7-10 cm)
Size: 
7.8 × 5.8 × 4.1 cm
Description

There are not too many localities world-wide which produce translucent Sphalerite is relevant size and quality - and for sure there is not even one locality in Europe which comes even close to Los Manforas. I would say only the material from Rucheng, China is on the same level. But most material I saw from this famous Spanish locality doesn´t show any aesthetic assemble - clusters, fragments of larger crystals, contacted ones etc - only a fist full of pieces on matrix, and even if they were on matrix, not really my taste. Of course I was always impressed by the color, the dimension and the quality - but never before I own something so aesthetic from Los Manforas.

The crystal is 50mm across, it consists of uncountable razor sharp stepped faces, which are all highly lustrous. 

The translucency is as goos as it ever could be on Sphalerite and I used only minor backlight for my photos - really top quality for all standards! The matrix is snowy white Dolomite, which also developed some smaller crystals. But directly below this completely free-standing Sphalerite you can see a further great addition - a large, exposed calcite scalenohedron, which is 57mm from front to back. It is sharp terminated and on satiny luster with just a touch of ivory color. The architecture of this specimen is really breath-taking and the contrast is fantastic.

No significant damages to export, part of the backside was on the rock.

Mineral Data
What's on the rock

Sphalerite

Formula: 
ZnS
Strunz: 
2.CB.05a
Crystal System: 
Isometric
Hardness: 
3.5 - 4.0
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