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  • Blog entry
    This weekend three of my friends visited me for some analytical work on their self collected and collection material. One of them had an old Tsumeb sample hosting filigrane silky masses on germanite renierite matrix. Not very beautiful, but obviously...
  • Blog entry
    It is that time of year again and I am sure you will have noticed a number of "Munich" themed auctions lining up on the schedule. Suffice to say there have been some tremendous minerals coming through and still more to come over the next week or so, and...
  • Blog entry
    This excellent shared photo from e-Rocks seller Edward Coghlan sort of sets the mood for the day at e-Rocks. The photo shows a group of explorers at Twll in Rhosydd Slate Mine, Wales standing in a large damp cavern with the light streaming in. We are up...
  • Blog entry
    Fom the last Oxford Show. UK Collector and Dealer Peter Briscoe has just moved house, and has still to finish unpacking boxes from his previous move - a familiar story! As part of this a box of superb boracite specimens he collected around 20 years ago...
  • Blog entry
    New book announced - Genesis & Classifying Agates & Jaspers: A New Theory, By Marco Campos-Venuti In English As described, Cracked one of the greatest mysteries of the geology! A Guide for the collector. A Bible for a geologist. This book shows...
  • Blog entry
    Carsten Slotta, of Mineral Treasure has this specimen of fluorite currently listed on e-Rocks. From the lesser known Black Forest locality of Igelschlatt Mine, Waldshut the piece is covered in amazingly perfect hexakis-octahedral crystals. (It should be...
  • Blog entry
    Calamaite is the third natural Ti dominant sulfate mineral known yet. Russian scientists recognized this phase, occuring as filigrane colourless sprays, while doing some analytical investigations in a matrix of coquimbite / römerite. Type locality is...
  • Blog entry
    Here is an old book, with a wonderful fantasy cover. It would be hard not to pick up this combination of graphics and illustrations and look inside. Schubert's Natural History of the mineral kingdom for school and home dates to the late 1880s and was...
  • Blog entry
    Not really a new year's resolution as such, but to make space for new projects, it is time to sell my old collection/hoard of Romanian minerals. Back in the day, before 2002 I put together quite a large selection of Romanian pieces, traveling there when...
  • Blog entry
    US collector Breck P Kent recently showed of his wonderful specimen of calcite from Stank Mine in the (then Lancashire) part of iron mining area of Cumbria, North West England. Stank Mine is famous for its scalenohedral calcite, often with characteristic...
  • Blog entry
    Back on the old e-Rocks, in January we introduced our first "spin presentation" for minerals displayed online. The concept is quite simple - you set up a camera and synchronise the stepped revolution of a turntable with the camera shutter to take a...
  • Blog entry
    I spent most of my Monday in the office with camera. Found some interesting mineralogy on some specimens from Bou Azzer. Varied paragenesis with different chemistry. Great colours whatever!
  • Blog entry
    Was happy to see a nice post from Marc Allen Fleischer of the Fleischer Museum on Facebook the other day. Mark had recently purchased and received the above Megiliggar apatite from TVM. This is his post, "You don’t expect to find a Pegmatite in England...
  • Blog entry
    As they say "you live and learn" and in the interest of mineralogy this is nearly a daily experience. The photograph above shows some little grain-like crystals of native sulphur set on scorodite from Hemerdon Bal in Devon, UK. I have never seen these...
  • Blog entry
    It is approaching the second anniversary of George joining the e-Rocks team; so after a record 24 consecutive "Employee of the Month" awards we thought it time to reward him with a nice trip to Spain. The upshot to this will be that we are going to be...
  • Blog entry
    We get to hear anecdotal stories about Grandad's collection getting thrown in a the landfill, or even more substantively a part of the Camborne School of Mines inventory going in a skip a few years back It is alarming to see to see this is continuing to...
  • Blog entry
    As Facebook does, this fantastic specimen photo posted by Val Collins in May 2012 appeared in my timeline today. Not many of these specimens of cerussite with pyromorphite from Daoping Mine appeared, this must be one of the best examples. Thanks to...
  • Blog entry
    George turned up today with a little collection of mainly Scottish Minerals. This is some native silver from Alva Mine, Central Scotland. 8mm across - rare stuff! The discovery of a native silver deposit in 1715 also coincided with the Jacobite rebellion...
  • Blog entry
    Here is a "lucky shot" of small inclusions of pyrite floating within a clear crystal of fluorite from Heights Quarry, Weardale. The crystal is 13mm across and was spotted by George at Bakewell last weekend. (click to enlarge) Below might be the actual...
  • Blog entry
    Apart from selling on e-rocks I am a passionate field collector. Everybody else doing so knows how difficult it can be to collect at a new locality. When the new e-rocks was introduced I was really happy to use the database function. You can search for...
  • Blog entry
    Our man of action George (and partner Sam) have had a busy few months getting themselves organised for a house move. Today finally it is the big day and everything is set to move into the new place. Of course we are all happy; with new house comes a...
  • Blog entry
    George & I took a morning out from website work to visit the third, Oxford show for 2015. The Oxford shows are run by Paul Lowe and have for the last years provided regular a venue for sellers and collectors in the UK. A small venue and a small show...
  • Blog entry
    One more yellow sphalerite, this one from Spain, 18+ct "Markoh-i-noor" cut, best choice to boost the dispersion! Sphalerite Cut & Photo by Egor Gavrilenko
  • Blog entry
    There are not that many UK minerals to be found with a species name beginning X. Here is one classic example recently listed on e-Rocks by Mike Brooke, Broadstone Minerals. Classic and interesting locality specimen from Wheal Maudlin, Lanlivery, Cornwall...
  • Blog entry
    George has been working with us for nearly 6 months and the mess in the shed is beginning to get organised - it is a very big shed! Recently pulled out of a box of dealer stock I bought from Liz and Dave Hacker over 10 years ago is this Florence Mine...
  • Blog entry
    This unusual specimen featured in my Christmas auction in 2013/2014. Smithsonite Psm Calcite. Whatley Quarry, Somerset, UK. Size: H:12.7cm x W:9.4cm x D:6.6cm Largest Crystal: 2cm
  • Blog entry
    This discovery in the Ted Smithson Collection and a previous entry by Mike Brooke led me to look into the background of these microscopic grains of gold from Sutherland in Scotland. The sheer amount of time - 24 hours - required to pan 100 or so flakes...
  • Blog entry
    We came across this this specimen of bright pine green chalcosiderite with goethite in a box yesterday. Very dirty, but with its label in the box. The specimen has cleaned and trimmed well to reveal its interest. Chalcosiderite was first noted as coming...
  • Blog entry
    13th & 14th August 2016 is a date for all UK based collectors to add to your diaries.... ........there is a new show being added to the UK mineral show circuit. Derbyshire based Don Edwards in conjunction with Tennants Auctioneers are launching the...
  • Blog entry
    I was in our archive TVM site researching something and chanced upon this blog entry from 13 years ago. Although not quite our first the content is quite interesting and certainly gives some insight into way back then, and how numbers have expanded...
  • Blog entry
    The mines at Merelani in Tanzania are not only already famous for the gemstones tanzanite, tsavorite, scapolite etc. but also for the superbly well crystallised sulphide minerals namely pyrite, wurtzite and of course alabandite, all coming to prominence...
  • Blog entry
    In the world of minerals different localities can often be distinguished by variations in morphology and or associations; for example it is comparatively easy to determine that a dioptase specimen was collected in Tsumeb over say Kaokoveld or Altyn. I...
  • Blog entry
    The new year continues this week with a full program of auctions from the e-Rocks sellers. As usual a huge and diverse range covering most aspects of collecting. This diamond listed in the latest SAL minerals auction is a good example, weighing in at 57....
  • Blog entry
    After being on the road all last week it was good to have something nice come to us for a change. Many UK dealers/collectors will know Steve Buckland as a keen fluorite collector, who has specialised in mostly North of England material over the past...
  • Blog entry
    A new feature on e-Rocks for both sellers and collectors is the ability to add analysis information to specimens in their inventory. Too often important analytical information is posted as an "aside" to the main pictures and not very readable. Here you...
  • Blog entry
    Reading something on Facebook by Ru Smith reminded me of this story about the demise of one of Cleveland's (now Yorkshire) more prominent land marks. The hill was originally a "Sugar Loaf", outlying the North Yorkshire Moors. The geology is sandstone...
  • Blog entry
    This chance discovery in the TVM shed turned out to be very interesting indeed. The specimen itself comprises very rich crystalline cinnabar in quartz matrix, coming to us from old collection material from Germany. Labelled simply as Grube Sizma, b....
  • Blog entry
    This week we are planning to make some upgrades to e-Rocks. Everything will be going on behind the scenes. There maybe a few occasions you will find a page to slow to load or will need a "refresh" for this to complete as the new software synchronises...
  • Blog entry
    On 12th August 2005 we relocated family and business to what we affectionately call Thames Valley Towers in Twyford, Reading. I thought it would be fun to reproduce and share our original posting covering the event, funny how 10 years later though not...
  • Blog entry
    ....and alkali mineral collectors. We have just purchased a small collection specialising in these minerals from UK collector Ben Gibson. The collection also contains a small suite from Cornwall, plus interlopers from other places like USA, Norway, India...
  • Blog entry
    Drakewalls House is an unassuming white painted Victorian house on the edge of Gunnislake, Cornwall. Here it is today currently being used as a guest house in the beautiful Tamar Valley; however to many mineral collectors this house will be remembered as...
  • Blog entry
    Here is a little spotlight on this rare pink manganese beryllium phosphate mineral. First discovered at Viitaniemi Pegmatite in Finland and still hard to spell, this brightly coloured mineral produces fine crystallised specimens from Pakistan, (and...
  • Blog entry
    I found this petrified “hamburger” among the landscaping cobbles at my old house. It is a water-worn limestone rock that has a layer of fossilized creatures. We keep it on display in a McDonald’s container and bring it out for show and tell regularly....
  • Blog entry
    This wulfenite specimen was news at Ste Marie Show in 2005, it was part of small find brought to the show by Guangha (George) Liu. The locality was given as Mian Ning Mine in Sichuan, China. At the time there was a lot of discussion, but the find was...
  • Blog entry
    These amazing images recently appeared in the Journal of American Chemistry Society. The picture shows individual molecules obtained by microscopy - the scale is mindblowing - 1 Angstrom length is 1 X 10-10m. Amazing to see how the structures that have...
  • Blog entry
    We got up early this morning and traveled to Heathrow, and then on to Munich, arriving at 15:00 local time. Although the show officially opens on Friday and many dealers have not arrived yet, there is already so much to see and take in; it feels as if...
  • Blog entry
    What a great start to Munich Show 2015 it has been. We arrived at the Show at around 1400Hrs local time and things were already buzzing. Almost immediately we were directed to the booth of Wendell Minerals to look three! cabinet sized fluorite specimens...
  • Blog entry
    Here is an interesting ovoid form embedded in obisidian from Coso Range, Inyo County, California. But what is inside? Answer - cristobalite tridymite & fayalite (brown crystals) Happy Easter
  • Blog entry
    Liroconite is just one of those minerals that attracts attention; it is rare, colourful and good specimens usually only found in old collections. When a piece is listed on e-Rocks we usually get excited and this one is definitely no exception. We saw...
  • Blog entry
    Marc Allen Fleischer owner of the Fleischer Museum has been showing of this interesting specimen from Tsumeb. One of the main directions of the Fleischer collection is "Rough and Cut" where a mineral is displayed side by side as natural mineral with a...
  • Blog entry
    Coming up on 18th May 2016 is a huge auction of antique books at the German Auction house Reis & Sohn, Königstein, Germany. Within the "Manuscript & Geography" section there are a number of fascinating early books (18th to 20th century) on...
  • Blog entry
    A very long and interesting day and we have settled ourselves into our new e-Rocks home. Graham our fantastic developer has turned in(I hope)for the night and George is driving back to Bristol. Thanks to all the people who have sent us messages, and...
  • Blog entry
    A bit of a surprise showed up today when going through some Madagascan specimens for auction. Packed away in thumbnail box labelled "Tourmaline Rubellite - Ambalamatsara" was this super little specimen of scheelite from Baia Sprie - Romania. These much...
  • Blog entry
    I am sure regular visitors to e-Rocks will remember a few "charity" auctions posted by Roger Lang, Montanpark we ran some months back. These auctions were run by Roger to raise funds for LED display lighting for his local Mineral Museum at Imsbach,...
  • Blog entry
    Apart from EDS analysis at a charge of 15€/sample, we now offer our e-rocks customers, who buy more than five specimens per month, five analysis for free per year. For more information have a look at: http://www.mineralanalytik.de/en/energydispersive-...
  • Blog entry
    Back in May we were pleased to announce that the e-Rocks Facebook page had reached 6,000 likes, well now we have reached the 8,000 mark. Our page presents a daily blog of new listings, auctions closing and photography and also a huge gallery of daily...
  • Blog entry
    I have been interested in and collected Romanian minerals since 1975, I don't recall seeing a quartz crystal in section before. This novelty specimen of quartz from Herja Romania shows some interesting internal features. A crystal section cut and...
  • Blog entry
    Another nice day out in Cornwall for Mike Berry & Mike Merry. On this trip they visited Perran St George Mine, Perranporth, Cornwall during a Spring tide, when the entrance is better exposed. Spectacular scenery and a couple of nice micros of...
  • Blog entry
    Recently I have been enjoying the micro photos of Yaiba Sakaguchi from Wakayama, Japan posted on Facebook. Yaiba has kindly let me share some of these on e-Rocks. I am sure you will agree these shine a new perspective on the minerals/localities. Well...
  • Blog entry
    Weishanite is a very rare gold-silver amalgam, which had two localities. Recent investigations of a unknown metallic hexagonal phase on an old sample hosting verified magnolite showed that this is Weishanite in beautiful hexagonal crystals. I have not...
  • Blog entry
    Germanium (Ge) & gallium (Ga) are elements which are essential in our todays life. ----------------------------------------------------------------- In the semiconductor industry Ga is used for InGaAs diodes, which have a very good sensitivity in...
  • Blog entry
    Six o'clock tonight was the end of our last full day at Munich 2016. We are back tomorrow but will be leaving early to travel back to the UK. Some great memories of the show this year but only just enough time for meeting and speaking to everyone we...
  • Blog entry
    Always good to see people help each other out, as promoted by e-Rocks seller Carsten Slotta (MinTreasure) today. Joy Desor is an excellent photographer and also a seller here, took these great shots for Carsten of his specimens.
  • Blog entry
    Rupert Harrison recently posted these pictures of Ed Retallack, retired quarry manager for Dean Quarry, St Keverne, Lizard, Cornwall. It features Ed holding his best collected specimen with the locality in the distance behind him. To me, another...
  • Blog entry
    A few days ago an anonymous user from Germany made e-Rocks history by being the 10,000th registered user to sign up to our site. As ever, we would like to thank "anonymous" and all our growing ranks of visitors both old and new for checking in and making...
  • Blog entry
      Flicking through the auctions yesterday I spotted a specimen of Mineevite-(Y) - always inquisitive to see the composition of these more obscure minerals I looked at the mineral data. I was even more curious to discover that in the formula, was the...
  • Blog entry
    A large block of native iron and weighing approx 20 tonnes. It was brought to the Naturhistoriska riksmuseet in Stockholm Sweden in 1870 by boat and horse-drawn carriage from Greenland's West Coast by Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld to a large fanfare. Naturally...
  • Blog entry
    In our current TVM auction we have added a few specimens from the Warren Taylor collection. We have known Warren for 15 years and have handled and advised on the disposal of a great number of his minerals since 2007. Within our database we have set up a...
  • Blog entry
    We all have them, but in the mineral world the continual exchange of specimens between collections, dealers and other collectors means that provenance and history can play an important part in the interest in a particular specimen. When we were recently...
  • Blog entry
    El Teniente mine is reportedly the largest underground copper mine in the world with some 3000km of tunnels and 1500km. The mine started in the the 1820s and named from Braden mine from 1904 until it was changed to El Teniente mine in 1973. The link...
  • Blog entry
    Peshawar based Imran Bangash of Spin Ghar Minerals has just returned from an exciting trip to the mining locality at Marki Khel in Khogyani, Afghanistan. The locality is well reknowned for its wonderful specimens of andradite, epidote, diopside, and...
  • Blog entry
    Ever had a discussion along the lines of "I have this old specimen, but it has no labels so I am not sure of where or what it is?" Most of us have and the mystery sometimes never gets solved, we have quite a pile here, which sometimes has a happy ending...
  • Blog entry
    Here is some information about an article published on the BBC website yesterday concerning a paper shortly to appear in the American Mineralogist. Authored by Dr Robert Hazen, from the Carnegie Institution in Washington DC, and Prof Jesse Ausubel of The...
  • Blog entry
    The Nick Bartlet collection, we purchased in 2004 still continues to provide interesting and uncommon items from its boxes. This most recent discovery is a specimen of schröckingerite from the Peath Lode on the 17th Level at Geevor, Cornwall. The find...
  • Blog entry
    Love this photo posted by Megan Scott showing behind the scenes with e-Rocks seller Jason Smith, AKA Bucket of Holes Minerals. Jason has been active on e-Rocks now since December 2012 and has been providing a super range of rare and interesting minerals...
  • Blog entry
    George and I have just picked up the collection of Dr Ernst Peter Uerpmann from deepest Spain. The collection of over 3,000 pieces has been in storage since 2002 when Peter moved from Germany to Alicante on his retirement; there are several interesting...
  • Blog entry
    When I started examining micro minerals I came across a nice specimen hosting olive green bartelkeite. It was pure luck to find this mineral. This is what I can say now looking back at the small number of specimens I had. This makes the species to one...
  • Blog entry
    Quite often minerals appear online from places that one is never likely to visit, some places like Tsumeb or Trepca are well photographed and beautiful, some of course ugly. One place I have never visualised is the Tatra mountains spanning Poland and...
  • Blog entry
    e-Rocks seller and field collector Tasos Tsinidis has recently been collecting these fine sanidine specimens at the locality, Kakourou Peak, Promachoi, Pella Prefecture, Central Macedonia, Greece. Tasos also kindly posted these photos of the collecting...
  • Blog entry
    September 3rd 2015 was the day that we changed over the e-Rocks website (above) to the current site you see today. It was a very long day and but we got through and have not really looked back since! All in all it has been quite a year on e-Rocks, with...
  • Blog entry
    Today was the first ever Leyburn show up there in the Yorkshire Dales. Hosted by Tennant's Auctioneers there was an auction of minerals alongside the show at their fantastic premises. In the picture is one of the lots as described in the catalogue; "A...
  • Blog entry
    Congratulations to Chris Spiromitros of Greekrocks - he has just updated/upgraded his website. He is also the first Dealer to put his e-Rocks auctions on his website using our Page App.
  • Blog entry
    For those of you who check out my personal timeline on Facebook you will already be aware that I keep this fed with a steady stream of mineral photographs and sometimes (not so) witty captions! I just do this for a bit of entertainment and interaction as...
  • Blog entry
    George and I are back from our Christmas road trip into Germany via Belgium and France. What we didn't pick up in minerals we certainly made up for with adventure and festive fun. Normal service with email replies etc will return from today, after a bit...
  • Blog entry
    Our technical department at e-Rocks (AKA my wife and George) have been on at me for some time to get a decent mobile phone as I am usually hard to track down when offline. Coupled with this we have a mobile version of the cataloguing/inventory system...
  • Blog entry
    Helga Palmer and Gordon Fielder recently unearthed this copper token dated 1788 from the Parys Mountain Copper Mining Company at West Basset in Cornwall. By eighteenth century standards this little token had traveled a long way from home, but with a...
  • Blog entry
    Today is Halloween, a fun time of dressing up, lighting lanterns and "trick or treating". Our own ghoul face agate lives all year round on a shelf with the family pictures above our stairs. We bought him back in 2000 when Christian (my wife) and I were...
  • Blog entry
    We are really pleased to announce the arrival of David Eicher's book The New Cosmos coming out in November. David is the editor in chief of the Astronomy magazine and has been associated with e-Rocks as both a buyer and seller almost since we started...
  • Blog entry
    Above is a picture from a few days ago of our last pallet of minerals to arrive for 2016. What a busy year it has been and now it is nearly over. Christmas and the holiday period are all set and there are some terrific contributions this year our...
  • Blog entry
    Mineral photography continues to be well written up in many places, and no doubt will get a few mentions here from time to time; we do have one or two expert photographers selling and contributing to our pages. Personally we have photographing minerals...
  • Blog entry
    A little bit of excitement for a new discovery/identification of bazzite in the Western Alps, Piedmont, Italy. Usually highly sought after by collectors, bazzite is a rare scandium rich type of beryl usually small with a charateristic strong baby blue...
  • Blog entry
      Today we saw our e-Rocks User registration count reach 7500; this means that barring the odd D.Duck and K.Kong we are connected to 7500 mineral collectors worldwide. Great news if you are prospective seller, re-assuring if you have not already signed...
  • Blog entry
    There has been a sensational recent find of fluorite in Connemara, County Galway, in the Republic of Ireland. TVM has been given exclusive access to the locality and has been given first refusal to the material released by the owners. Map of Connemara,...
  • Blog entry
    You know you’re a rockhound when cries of “Froodite! I’ve got froodite” are heard echoing from the rafters. And before you step back in alarm, it’s not contagious… it’s the name of a mineral. Please, allow me to make introductions. My husband Reiner and...
  • Blog entry
    As an online seller it is always good to hear something we have sent out has been received and lived up to expectations. Here is one from Leor Goldberg recently published on Facebook. Recent acquisition! Gypsum with included thometzekite on matrix. Both...
  • Blog entry
    Last month we blogged about the acquisition of an important Wheal Maudlin "Horsetooth" siderite specimen from an unspecified lot of minerals at an auction in North Yorkshire. Siderite - Wheal Maudlin, Lanlivery, Cornwall The provenance of the piece has...
  • Blog entry
    Ha Ha, here is a specimen of well crystallised hemimorphite from Bage Mine, Cromford, Derbyshire. According to the label the specimen was collected on 21 November, 1999 by George Fletcher. Bage mine is well known for such UK classics such as matlockite...
  • Blog entry
    Searching for radioactive minerals is a piece of cake compared to metal detecting. If you get a signal, you’ve got a target. None of this business of uncovering nails or shotgun casings, or the end of your steel-toed boot. Still, using a mid-century...
  • Blog entry
    This Sunday is the Paul Lowe Memorial Oxford Show. I am sure it will be a great show and a good opportunity to remember Paul with fellow mineral people. These are the details; Venue: Exeter Hall, Kidlington, North Oxford, OX5 1AB Sunday 27th November...
  • Blog entry
    This really odd habit of cuprite has just come to light from the copper mines at Rudabanya, Hungary. Not seen before from here, the habit appears to be octahedral modified by cubic faces - FOV 1.5mm. The specimen is in the collection of e-Rocks seller...