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IMPORTANT NATURAL HISTORY AUCTION

by I.M. Chait


326 lots with images

May 4, 2013

Live Auction

9330 Civic Center Drive

Beverly Hills, CA, 90210 USA

Phone: +1 (310) 285 0182

Fax: +1 (310) 285 9740

Email: chait@chait.com

326 Lots
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MASSIVE APOPHOLITE GEODE

Lot 1: MASSIVE APOPHOLITE GEODE

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Description: MASSIVE APOPHOLITE GEODE 印度 沸石礦石晶體標本 India Apopholite is one of the main minerals in the zeolite group. It is frequently found in association with stilbite crystals, and often double-terminated into pyramidal points in the various shades of green that indicate the presence of vanadium. That beautiful gentle hue is present here, a delicate background to the pale pink-brown "Wheat-sheaf" stilbite crystals that dot its surface. Zeolite collecting exploded when the Indian deposits became actively mined some 20 years ago, producing many new and rare mineral types, and contributing to the mineral books and collections globally, but the present example is of unusually large size at 18 3/4 x 14 inches, custom-mounted on a metal display stand.

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TRINITITE – A REMNANT OF THE FIRST ATOMIC BOMB

Lot 2: TRINITITE – A REMNANT OF THE FIRST ATOMIC BOMB

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Description: TRINITITE – A REMNANT OF THE FIRST ATOMIC BOMB Alamogordo, New Mexico In the same way that Fulgurite is formed from the heat of a lightning strike, so in one patch of New Mexico desert, Trinitite was formed when sand and earthy matter instantaneously fused into glass under the intense heat of the first atomic bomb test on July 16, 1945. The name of that bomb was Trinity, hence the name of the glass, known also as atomite or Alamogordo glass, represented here in a lovely little specimen with a great 'atomic' green tinge and one side with a fantastic glassy smoothness, 11/16 x 9/16 x 1/4 inches, whimsically presented in a small Riker mount with the reproduced cover of a pulp paperback Atomic Girl.

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MASSIVE NATURAL JADE BOULDER

Lot 3: MASSIVE NATURAL JADE BOULDER

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Description: MASSIVE NATURAL JADE BOULDER 天然玉原石 This natural jade boulder boasts a fine sage green color throughout which can be clearly seen through the unpolished "skin" of the stone which has been left untouched since unearthed. Weighing a massive 453 pounds, the natural shape of the stone emulates a single mountain rising up from the plains showing numerous "caves" and "grottos". Measuring 26 1/2 inches long, this boulder is also a highly decorative sculpture that can be displayed indoors and outside in a garden setting.

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AESTHETIC AMETHYST GEODE WITH CALCITE

Lot 4: AESTHETIC AMETHYST GEODE WITH CALCITE

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Description: AESTHETIC AMETHYST GEODE WITH CALCITE Uruguay This highly attractive piece is unusual for incorporating a large polished section of the matrix rock below the crystals, displaying superb swirling patterns in the agatized stone. The naturally bifurcated base has been filled for stability, but the overall impression remains uncannily one of a tooth, of long, pointed form. The interior of the geode itself is carpeted with fine, large blocky crystals with superb deep purple coloring. In addition, nestled at one edge is a large calcite crystal of soft orange-tinged translucence, and dusted on the underside with a profusion of tiny sparkling crystal points. A highly aesthetic display piece of great natural beauty, it is presented on a custom-made ebonized metal stand with four spreading feet, 63 1/2 inches high overall.

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FINE NAMIBIAN FLUORITE

Lot 5: FINE NAMIBIAN FLUORITE

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Description: FINE NAMIBIAN FLUORITE B-satellite pit, Okoruso Mine, Otjiwarongo Region, Karibib District, Namibia From a relatively new-found vein in the famed Okoruso mine comes this typically fine fluorite specimen. The mass of regular cuboid crystals boasts a rich deep purple color and fine translucence, but best of all, numerous of the crystals display the strange ghosting habit of colorless crystal outlines within. A fine aesthetic specimen, it measures 6 inches wide, presented on a perspex display base.

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FINE NAMIBIAN FLUORITE

Lot 6: FINE NAMIBIAN FLUORITE

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Description: FINE NAMIBIAN FLUORITE B-satellite pit, Okoruso Mine, Otjiwarongo Region, Karibib District, Namibia This superb specimen is from a relatively recent new strain of fluorite from the renowned Okoruso Mine. It displays all the first-class qualities of specimens from this locality, with beautifully-formed cuboid crystals in lovely translucent bottle green, profusely tinged and edged in vivid deep purple, 8 7/8 inches wide, on a perspex display base.

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TWIN PYRITE CRYSTAL CUBES

Lot 7: TWIN PYRITE CRYSTAL CUBES

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Description: TWIN PYRITE CRYSTAL CUBES Navajún, La Rioja province, Spain Crystals of the iron sulphide pyrite are amongst the strangest-looking to be found in the natural world. Their cubic habit makes for fascinating specimens, with smooth reflective faces like man-made silvery cubes. This uncanny natural sculpture boasts two such interlocked crystals, the larger 1 3/16 inches wide, partially embedded in the white matrix rock, 3 1/4 inches wide overall.

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MULTIPLE PYRITE CUBES ON MATRIX

Lot 8: MULTIPLE PYRITE CUBES ON MATRIX

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Description: MULTIPLE PYRITE CUBES ON MATRIX Navajún, La Rioja province, Spain The pyrites of Navajún were formed within the sediments of a large delta that covered the Cameros Sierra during the Mesozoic era at the end of the Jurassic Period approximately 120 years ago, and nowhere else on earth is this iron sulfide mineral found in such beautifully regular crystal forms. Here is a fine specimen comprising several of the silvery, cubic crystals growing out of one another, the largest almost 1 inch wide, on a creamy stone matrix, 3 1/2 inches wide.

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PYRITE SNAKE

Lot 9: PYRITE SNAKE

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Description: PYRITE SNAKE Navajún, La Rioja province, Spain The La Rioja province of northern Spain is famous not only for its red wine, but also for its fine specimens of one of nature's most uncanny wonders. Pyrite is an iron sulphide with an isometric crystal habit which in its most striking form manifests itself in these perfect cubes, with sharp right-angled corners and smooth silvery surfaces. This terrific collection comprises forty-nine individual crystals, of cuboid form, graduated in size from approximately 1/8 to 1 1/16 inches square.

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DRAMATIC BI-COLORED FLUORITE

Lot 10: DRAMATIC BI-COLORED FLUORITE

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Description: DRAMATIC BI-COLORED FLUORITE People's Republic of China Fluorite from China is some of the most attractively-colored and desirable in the world. Occasionally it is even found in such a dramatic form as here, with two completely distinct colorings. The lovely pale translucent bottle green of the main mass is wonderfully offset by the growth of regular, blocky crystals in delicate pale mauve. A fine specimen of attractive and delicate contrast, it measures 7 1/4 inches wide.

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CHINESE GREEN FLUORITE

Lot 11: CHINESE GREEN FLUORITE

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Description: CHINESE GREEN FLUORITE Xiang Hua Ling Mine, Hu Nau Province, People's Republic of China This is a classic and beautiful example of fine Chinese fluorite. It boasts the typically soft bottle green coloring, shading to translucence towards the edges, with a couple of discreet patches of dramatic deep rich purple. The surface displays the fascinating jacaré texture of the uncannily regular crystal growth, and one end has been sawn to provide a flat base for upright display, 7 inches high.

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FINE CHRYSANTHEMUM STONE

Lot 12: FINE CHRYSANTHEMUM STONE

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Description: FINE CHRYSANTHEMUM STONE Hunan Province, People's Republic of China The natural sprays of celestite found in this dark Chinese limestone earned their name for their distinctive floral pattern. This is a particularly fine example, with a large formation of excellent three-dimensionality at the top of the matrix, in a lovely soft white-gray. There is another partial spray, and a smaller example near the base, each standing in wonderful contrast to the smooth dark gray matrix, presented on an ornately carved and lacquered wooden stand, 17 1/4 inches high overall.

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FULGURITE SPECIMEN

Lot 13: FULGURITE SPECIMEN

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Description: FULGURITE SPECIMEN Africa At first glance it seems impossible to guess what this strange object might be. One would certainly not suppose that it was a hollow tube of glass, although its extreme fragility is immediately apparent to the clumsy. The name comes from the Latin fulgar, meaning "thunderbolt": it is the result of a lightning strike in quatorze sand, the fine particles fused by the extreme and sudden heat (up to 4000°C) into this strange arrow-straight, roughly-textured object. A rare phenomenon, this is a specimen of particularly fine form, with well-defined cruciform cross-section and superbly rugose texture, and unusually full-bodied, approximately 1 3/4 x 1 3/4 x 7 7/8 inches.

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FINE RHODOCHROSITE, SPHALERITE AND QUARTZ

Lot 14: FINE RHODOCHROSITE, SPHALERITE AND QUARTZ

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Description: FINE RHODOCHROSITE, SPHALERITE AND QUARTZ Sunnyside Mine, Howardsville, Silverton District, San Juan Co, Colorado Combination mineral specimens are highly prized by collectors; more so combinations of three or more, and particularly those of such highly aesthetic appeal as here. From a glimmering silvery cluster of sphalerite crystals, with a good area of the distinctive hexagonal structure, grow blooms of lovely white quartz rods, interspersed with the delicate pink blush of rhodochrosite, in a highly attractive combination and arrangement. A world-class cabinet specimen, it measures 4 6/8 inches wide.

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FINE BARITE ON FLUORITE

Lot 15: FINE BARITE ON FLUORITE

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Description: FINE BARITE ON FLUORITE Minerva #1 mine, Cave-in-Rock District, Hardin Co, southern Illinois This exquisite cabinet specimen is from the largest orebody in the US, the famed Minerva #1 mine, first exploited in 1942. The mine is renowned not only for its fluorite, but also for world-class specimens of strontianite, witherite and barite. Here is a wonderful combination of two of those minerals: beautifully formed cuboid crystals of fluorite, with a rich purple color and fine translucence, are dusted all over with snow white barite crystals, creating a highly aesthetic combination, in a perfectly sized cabinet specimen, 4 inches long.

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CELESTITE GEODE

Lot 16: CELESTITE GEODE

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Description: CELESTITE GEODE Madagascar There is a small, unassuming spot on the west coast of Madagascar where light cream-colored geodes are found. When opened, they reveal themselves to contain these beautiful sky-blue celestite crystals, a strontium sulfate reputed to be of great assistance in dream recall and astral travel. It is found in small quantities in many localities, but only in quantity and bearing this characteristically beautiful color on the island of Madagascar. Of well-opened form, this fine geode boasts good-sized crystals of excellent color, and measures approximately 11 x 10 1/4 x 8 1/2 inches.

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FINE CHINESE FLUORITE

Lot 17: FINE CHINESE FLUORITE

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Description: FINE CHINESE FLUORITE People's Republic of China Chinese fluorite is highly prized, but even by normal standards this is a superb specimen. It displays a gorgeous pale green sea-foam coloring, across a jumble of large cuboid crystals of superb translucence, 9 inches wide.

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FINE DOLOMITE CONCRETION

Lot 18: FINE DOLOMITE CONCRETION

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Description: FINE DOLOMITE CONCRETION Eocene Inglis limestone, Levy Co, Florida This fantastical natural sculpture is the result of silt-laden water seeping into the apertures in the Inglis limestone of Florida. A relatively rare occurrence, as the water disperses, it leaves behind its deposits, which form as this wonderful internal cast. Of marvelously complex, fragile, botryoidal form, it displays a lovely combination of fine texture and bulbous areas of smoothness, in a fine pale brown-gray color, dotted in places with small white barnacles and seashells to provide a delightful contrast, approximately 19 x 10 x 8 1/2 inches overall.

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FINE AND DELICATE GOLD NUGGET WITH CRYSTALS

Lot 19: FINE AND DELICATE GOLD NUGGET WITH CRYSTALS

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Description: FINE AND DELICATE GOLD NUGGET WITH CRYSTALS ex. Hubert de Monmonier Collection Kalgoorlie, Western Australia It is hard to believe that this beautifully delicate gold specimen survived the rigorous tumbling of the Outback, but it retains an exquisite appearance of fine texture and distinct areas of original crystal habit, as though folded in on itself over and again, with some areas pitted and burnished, and others retaining a fascinating brittleness, coming with an old collection label. Approximately 1 3/4 x 1 1/2 x 3/4 inches and weighing 45.4g (1.46 ozt).

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EXTRA-ANTHROPOMORPHIC GOLD NUGGET

Lot 20: EXTRA-ANTHROPOMORPHIC GOLD NUGGET

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Description: EXTRA-ANTHROPOMORPHIC GOLD NUGGET Mt Monger, Western Australia The fantastical form of this terrific nugget recalls nothing so much as an alien figure, of flattened form, with a beautifully pitted and textured surface, an unusual narrow 'neck', and a high yellow color, approximately 2 3/4 x 1 1/4 x 1/8 inches, 96.4g (3.1 ozt).

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FINE GOLD NUGGET

Lot 21: FINE GOLD NUGGET

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Description: FINE GOLD NUGGET Dunolly, Victoria, Australia This is a classic Australian gold nugget, burnished and uniquely formed by water-tumbling across the barren Outback, but retaining wonderful areas of finely textured surface, and enveloping some pieces of the soft pink quartzite matrix rock, in attractive contrast to the rich yellow of the metal, approximately 2 x 1 5/8 x 3/4 inches, 146.9g (4.72 ozt).

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LARGE GOLD NUGGET

Lot 22: LARGE GOLD NUGGET

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Description: LARGE GOLD NUGGET Dunolly, Victoria, Australia A highly attractive nugget of superb size, this specimen boasts the typically rich color and fascinating form of Australian gold specimens, from areas of water-tumbled burnishing, to finely textured pitting, folds, bulges, and ridges. Nuggets over 5oz in weight are extremely rare, with usually no more than three or four found each year, making this a particularly large, rare and fine specimen, of attractively elongated form, approximately 5 3/8 x 1 3/4 x 1 inches, 705.8g (22.69 ozt.)

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SENSATIONAL GOLD NUGGET WITH NATURAL QUARTZ

Lot 23: SENSATIONAL GOLD NUGGET WITH NATURAL QUARTZ

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Description: SENSATIONAL GOLD NUGGET WITH NATURAL QUARTZ Central Victoria, Australia This massive specimen is a highly unusual and highly attractive find, even by the standards of the great Australian gold fields. The vivid yellow color of the metal denotes an exceptionally high carat content, and it boasts almost no burnishing, with a superb and finely textured surface throughout, like the delicate crumpling of gold leaf. Dramatically, the nugget also retains a large portion of the matrix rock, a milky-white quartzite with a soft pink blush and veins of vivid earthy red. A highly aesthetic specimen of museum quality and exceptional size, it measures approximately 6 3/4 x 3 5/8 x 3 inches, containing a massive 3100g (99.67 ozt) of gold.

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RARE RED AMBER

Lot 24: RARE RED AMBER

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Description: RARE RED AMBER Miocene-Oligocene Chiapas, Mexico Amber is found in several different locations around the world and in several different colors, the most common and instantly recognizable being a familiar honey-gold. Much rarer, however, is this beautiful variety from Mexico. Mexican amber is well-known for its rich colors and clarity and the present specimen is no exception, with superb clarity and a wonderful deep rich blood-red color, the variety known also as Mayan amber, and found only in this one location. A very rare specimen of superb quality, it measures 4 3/4 inches wide.

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CARVED

Lot 25: CARVED "MAYAN" AMBER

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Description: CARVED "MAYAN" AMBER Miocene-Oligocene Mexico This evocative little carving was fashioned from a single piece of fine Mexican amber, shading from a pale honey color to a deep rich gold, tinged with dark green and blue. It has been nicely fashioned into the form of a proud Mayan bust, with elaborate feathered headdress in the form of a bird, 3 3/8 inches high overall.

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RARE PYRITE ON AMBER

Lot 26: RARE PYRITE ON AMBER

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Description: RARE PYRITE ON AMBER Miocene-Oligocene Mexico When extraneous material is found with the fossilized tree resin known as amber, it is usually included, trapped in the sticky ooze for all eternity. Here, however, is an extremely rare example of the opposite: the golden amber nugget is covered almost entirely by growths and dustings of dramatic gray and white pyrite, making for a highly unusual specimen, 2 1/4 inches wide.

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AMBER WITH PETALS

Lot 27: AMBER WITH PETALS

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Description: AMBER WITH PETALS Miocene-Oligocene Mexico This beautiful deep golden nugget is filled with a profusion of petals and leaves and other floral inclusions, from the sub-tropical forests of Mexico. 23 million years ago the oozing tree resin engulfed this debris and slowly hardened, trapping them in suspended perfection for all eternity. Aside from the inclusions, this nugget also displays excellent clarity and coloring, and measures 3 inches high, with a flattened end for upright display.

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LARGE AMBER NUGGET WITH TERMITES

Lot 28: LARGE AMBER NUGGET WITH TERMITES

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Description: LARGE AMBER NUGGET WITH TERMITES Late Oligocene Chiapas, Mexico Over 24 million years ago, the oozing resin of a tropical Hymenaea tree crept down its trunk, trapping in its sticky path any unfortunate creatures that might be in the way. Imprisoned for eternity in a golden tomb, in this particular nugget are two unusually large termites, 1 1/4 and 1 1/8 inches long, preserved in perfect detail, right down to the veins of their gossamer thin wings. The gorgeous deep red-gold nugget also contains various smaller insects, including a 7/8-inch long beetle, and various floral remains. Brought to a beautifully polished finish, it measures approximately 5 1/4 x 4 1/2 x 7/8 inches, presented on a perspex display stand.

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LEAVES TRAPPED IN AMBER

Lot 29: LEAVES TRAPPED IN AMBER

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Description: LEAVES TRAPPED IN AMBER Late Oligocene Chiapas, Mexico A wonderful polished nugget of Mexican amber, this displays a gorgeous deep red-gold color and excellent clarity, allowing for perfect visibility of the numerous small leaves caught in the oozing tree resin, 30 million years ago, and held suspended in the amber for all eternity. A superb snapshot of late Oligocene flora, it has been brought to a gleaming polished finish and measures approximately 3 x 2 7/8 x 1 inches, with a perspex display stand.

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AMBER LIZARD TRIO

Lot 30: AMBER LIZARD TRIO

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Description: AMBER LIZARD TRIO Oligocene-Miocene Dominican Republic This exquisite little sculpture was carved in Bali from a single piece of fine Dominican amber of superb clarity and a lovely warm golden honey color. Two grown lizards lie in a huddle with their baby, beautifully fashioned, with fine scale texture and characterful black-dotted eyes, 3 inches wide overall.

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INSECTS CAUGHT IN AMBER

Lot 31: INSECTS CAUGHT IN AMBER

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Description: INSECTS CAUGHT IN AMBER Oligocene-Miocene Dominican Republic A superb little polished nugget of warm golden amber, this contains an unusually large number of insects in close proximity, trapped in the oozing tree resin over 24 million years ago. Imprisoned for all eternity are four termites, perfectly preserved right down to the delicate veins of their wings, the largest almost 1 inch long. They are accompanied by various smaller grubs and insect parts, in a nugget of excellent clarity and gleaming polish, 2 1/2 inches long.

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INSECT WINGS IN AMBER

Lot 32: INSECT WINGS IN AMBER

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Description: INSECT WINGS IN AMBER Oligocene Dominican Republic A fine nugget with a gorgeous pale golden color and remarkably complete clarity, visible within are a paired set of diaphanous insect wings. Miraculously preserved to the tiniest detail in the slowly hardening tree resin, they are joined for all eternity by a number of tiny gnats, similarly preserved to perfection, in a polished freeform teardrop nugget, 1 3/4 inches long.

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ANT TRAPPED IN AMBER

Lot 33: ANT TRAPPED IN AMBER

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Description: ANT TRAPPED IN AMBER Oligocene Dominican Republic Caught in the sticky resin of the Hymenaea protera tree over 25 million years ago, this good-sized ant is twisted as though struggling against the engulfing ooze. His fate was to be trapped for all eternity, as the resin hardened inexorably to amber, and preserved the creature in the finest lifelike detail. A superb nugget, of elongated form, it has a rich golden color and superlative clarity, and measures 2 1/8 inches long.

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LARGE BRECCIATED JASPER BOX

Lot 34: LARGE BRECCIATED JASPER BOX

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Description: LARGE BRECCIATED JASPER BOX 碧石長方蓋盒 Handcrafted in Italy Large Italian crafted box of brecciated jasper; of deep rectangular form with locking hinge: the highly polished slices displaying attractive orange to coral coloration with translucent crystalline rivering throughout; the interior lined in black onyx; raised on four clear quartz feet. L: 9 3/8"

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PIETRA DURA-TYPE INLAID ONYX TABLETOP

Lot 35: PIETRA DURA-TYPE INLAID ONYX TABLETOP

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Description: PIETRA DURA-TYPE INLAID ONYX TABLETOP 縞瑪瑙花果紋方檯面 Handcrafted in Italy Fine Italian crafted and polished, pietra dura-type inlaid onyx tabletop, with framing band of vivid green malachite: each corner bearing pairs of peaches, pears, plums and a bunch of grapes; all realistically rendered in a variety of appropriately colored stones. 47 1/4 inches x 23 3/4 inches

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PINK MARBLE TABLE TOP WITH STAND

Lot 36: PINK MARBLE TABLE TOP WITH STAND

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Description: PINK MARBLE TABLE TOP WITH STAND 粉大理石圓檯桌 A beautifully aesthetic stone, this marble glows with lovely soft salmon shades, veined with white quartz and (resin-filled) pockets of druzy crystals and brought to a high-polished finish; D: 36" (table top); on an ornate bronzed cast-iron stand; H: 29 3/4" (overall)

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POLISHED RAINBOW OBSIDIAN

Lot 37: POLISHED RAINBOW OBSIDIAN

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Description: POLISHED RAINBOW OBSIDIAN 墨西哥 彩虹黑曜石標本 Mexico This gorgeously carved and polished piece of black volcanic glass is the Mexican rainbow obsidian, famed for the lamellar crystallites that create an amazing array of regular banded colors. This is a particularly vivid specimen, lined with gold, green, purple, blue, red and all shades in between, in uncannily regular formation across the surface of the highly polished freeform and is one of the best to have been offered at auction. It is 5 1/2 inches long.

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RAINBOW OBSIDIAN FREEFORM

Lot 38: RAINBOW OBSIDIAN FREEFORM

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Description: RAINBOW OBSIDIAN FREEFORM 墨西哥 彩虹黑曜石標本 Mexico Rainbow obsidian is a form of volcanic glass, notable for its remarkable property of iridescence: tiny gas bubbles are trapped within the lava flow and manifest themselves in striking bands of soft electric color seemingly just below the polished surface. Here is a fine, large example displaying gorgeous banded shapes of green, purple and blue and measuring 11 x 6 x 2 1/2 inches.

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ITALIAN TIGER EYE PICTURE FRAME

Lot 39: ITALIAN TIGER EYE PICTURE FRAME

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Description: ITALIAN TIGER EYE PICTURE FRAME 虎眼石相框 Handcrafted in Italy Frame clad in sliced and highly polished cross-sections of tiger eye: the lovely deep chocolate brown and shimmering gold have been arranged to form a semi-symmetrical patterning around a 2 x 2 3/4 inch opening; and measuring approximately 4 7/8 x 5 5/8 inches overall.

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FINE RHODOCHROSITE SPHERE

Lot 40: FINE RHODOCHROSITE SPHERE

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Description: FINE RHODOCHROSITE SPHERE 阿根廷 菱錳礦球體 Argentina The highly patterned surface of this lovely little polished sphere bears witness to the skill of the master lapidarist in working a material of such variable hardness. Streaked with the lovely soft pink and white banded patterning for which Argentinean rhodochrosite is so prized, it is enlivened by thin veins of black and gray, patches of fine-grained matrix rock, and a dramatic aperture lined with the fine blade-like crystals of the rhodochrosite, and smooth soft gray chalcedony. It measures 3 1/2 inches diameter on a lacquered wooden stand.

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ROUND LABRADORITE TABLE TOP

Lot 41: ROUND LABRADORITE TABLE TOP

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Description: ROUND LABRADORITE TABLE TOP 玄武岩圓檯面 Madagascar Large and highly aesthetic tabletop of circular form; fashioned from the comparatively rare feldspar mineral labradorite, a beautiful mélange of rich dark green and gray shades; with a profusion of flashing labradorescence for which the mineral is prized, in electric colors of blue, green and golden orange, visible all across this fine furnishing piece; Diameter: 31 1/2 inches

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PYRRHOTITE WITH SCHEELITE FREEFORM

Lot 42: PYRRHOTITE WITH SCHEELITE FREEFORM

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Description: PYRRHOTITE WITH SCHEELITE FREEFORM 加拿大 雌黃鐵礦及白钨礦石標本 Canada Pyrrhotite is a relatively rare iron sulfide, occasionally found in conjunction with the calcium tungstate scheelite. This massive and alluring freeform has been polished to a gleaming metallic finish, the silvery surface flecked with black. It harbors a secret, however, for when exposed to ultraviolet light the most incredible transformation takes place: the metal form turns a rich deep black, profusely speckled with vibrant points of pale blue, immediately evocative of twinkling stars in the night sky. An impressive and surprising display piece, it stands 10 inches high.

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ARTS AND CRAFTS STYLE MAHOGANY BOX WITH AGATE

Lot 43: ARTS AND CRAFTS STYLE MAHOGANY BOX WITH AGATE

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Description: ARTS AND CRAFTS STYLE MAHOGANY BOX WITH AGATE Artist: James Kutz The lid of this supremely handsome coffer is elegantly inset with ten rectangular domed cabochons of lovely banded agate, in dynamic shades of black, pale blue and white, gleamingly polished. In the center is an 8 3/4-inch long slice of agate, of attractively undulating form, bordered in dark blue around a gentle, colorless translucence, with blushing patterns of yellow and a dramatic orange streak. The interior incorporates a removable, sectioned tray with an inset spherical pull of rich black and green swirling jasper. The mahogany is stained a lovely warm deep red-brown, and the corners of the box are formed by handsome, tapering columns, 21 3/4 x 4 7/8 x 9 5/8 inches overall.

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QUARTZ CRYSTAL POINT

Lot 44: QUARTZ CRYSTAL POINT

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Description: QUARTZ CRYSTAL POINT Artist: James Kutz This handsome point beautifully displays the fascinating inner structure of quartz crystal, its interior a captivating mass of planes and clouds, tinged near the base with a ferric orange blush and standing 11 inches high, on a finely fashioned and smoothly turned hardwood base featured with a light fitting which beautifully illuminates the stone from beneath.

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LARGE BURL WOOD BOWL

Lot 45: LARGE BURL WOOD BOWL

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Description: LARGE BURL WOOD BOWL Artist: Robert K. Frank This beautiful bowl was carved from burl wood found in Santa Barbara, California. Burl is the name given to the gnarled wood taken from the root-base of a tree, or other areas of unusual deformation, such as knotty limb junctures, and it is prized for its highly characterful grain and form. This example is no exception, with wonderful whorls of deep grain, in a soft pale tan on the outside, and warm mahogany color in the interior, stamped on the underside RKF, and measuring approximately 23 1/4 x 10 3/4 x 9 3/4 inches.

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MASSIVE PURPLE PASSION FLUORESCENT SPHERE

Lot 46: MASSIVE PURPLE PASSION FLUORESCENT SPHERE

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Description: MASSIVE PURPLE PASSION FLUORESCENT SPHERE Purple Passion Mine, Wickenburg, Arizona The rarest and most desirable of all fluorescent specimens are those that contain more than two minerals that glow under UV light. The present specimen contains four such minerals: fluorite (purple), aragonite (light blue), calcite (red), and willemite (green). The other significant aspect of its rarity is its sheer size: this multi-colored behemoth was honed from a single 1,200 lb block of rough and itself weighs approximately 300 lb. It measures just over 16 inches in diameter and is by far the largest sphere from this locality. Interestingly, these specimens can fluoresce under all three of long, medium and short wave ultraviolet light, displaying different colors under each. The present photograph was taken under shortwave light, but even richer colors can be achieved under mid-range ultraviolet.

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REMARKABLE OPAL SCULPTURE

Lot 47: REMARKABLE OPAL SCULPTURE

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Description: REMARKABLE OPAL SCULPTURE This beautiful miniature vessel has been carved with the highest quality craftsmanship from a single piece of fine Chinese opal. In the form of a vertical clam shell, surmounted by a frog on a lotus pad, with a blossom and sea wave base, it shimmers all over with scintillating points of electric green and flashes of brilliant pink, red and blue, 3 inches wide, in a decorative fabric-covered presentation box.

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TIGER IRON TABLE TOP

Lot 48: TIGER IRON TABLE TOP

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Description: TIGER IRON TABLE TOP Paleoproterozoic Ord Ranges, Western Australia This gorgeous table top is one large polished slab of tiger iron, from the unique deposits of Western Australia. The narrow, regular strata of the banded iron formation have here been distorted by the huge pressures of time and geology into a particularly attractive undulating pattern of thin layers, shimmering with rich black metallic hematite, vivid dark red jasper, shimmering golden tiger eye, and warm brown stromatolite. Brought to a high polished finish, it makes for a spectacular furnishing piece, 24 7/8 inches in diameter.

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PAIR OF TIGER IRON SPHERES

Lot 49: PAIR OF TIGER IRON SPHERES

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Description: PAIR OF TIGER IRON SPHERES Paleoproterozoic Ord Ranges, Western Australia Tiger iron is notoriously difficult to work, due to the differing hardnesses of its banded formation. But the effort is worth it, for these two delightful spheres each displays the wonderful, twisting patterning of the contrasting strata, in red, black, brown, and shimmering gold. Each has been brought to a high polished finish and measures 7 inches in diameter, one presented on a decorative tapering gilt stand.

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ROCK CRYSTAL OWL QUARTET

Lot 50: ROCK CRYSTAL OWL QUARTET

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Description: ROCK CRYSTAL OWL QUARTET Artist: Luis Alberto Quispe Aparicio Four wise owls perch patiently on a beautifully polished and arching piece of ruby in zoisite. The rich purple and green coloring is offset by the lovely pale translucence of the birds, superbly fashioned from rock crystal quartz, with garnet eyes and agate beaks, and claws of 18k gold vermeil. The whole beautiful piece is presented on an oval base of polished black obsidian, the edge patterned with gold-stamped darting, 9 1/4 inches wide overall and 8 inches high.

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