Smithsonite var. Cuprian

Lavrion Mining Dist., Lavreotiki, Attica, Greece
Small Cabinet, 8.5 x 5.2 x 2.4 cm
Start Time: 09/07/2023 7:00:00 pm (CDT)
End Time: 09/16/2023 6:30:00 pm (CDT)
Auction Closed
Winning Bid: $775

Item Description

Very unique and alluring Smithsonite piece from the ANCIENT mines at Lavrion, Greece - they date back to the Roman era and before! Most smithsonite from here is rather uninteresting on a worldwide basis, or a softer palette of colors. This, however, is strongly colorful and literally glows when backlit. The Smithsonite shows a gradational color change from a translucent milky white with a just a hint of blue-green at the bottom to a luminous "kelly mine" blue-green at the top and has subtle, radial divergent texture that is more pronounced on one side compared to the other. It also shows a conspicuous and pleasing satin sheen on both sides and the top. There is a touch of gossanous material at the base which was the point of attachment for this splendid Lavrion Smithsonite. This is a bizarre specimen in richness and form, and unlike others we have seen. It came from an old Italian collection and is thought to have come out in the early 1900s (when in fact many large stalactites and colorful growths were collected here - and we even found one in the collection of Andrew Carnegie, circa 1900). The color is thought to be due to trace amounts of copper, perhaps in interaction with REE elements at a miniscule percentage, as with blue adamite from this mine. Mineral Collection Professionals (MCP) label - that is the laboratory of Federico Pezzotta, who analyzed it (to be sure it is smithsonite even though it looks like aragonite at first), and cleaned it. It came from an old European collection. From what I have seen, this is unique. Valued $2500-plus.

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Bidding History

Bid Amount Bid Time
$775 09/16/2023 6:22:00 pm (CDT)
$750 09/16/2023 6:22:00 pm (CDT)
$454 09/14/2023 4:50:55 pm (CDT)
$444 09/14/2023 4:50:54 pm (CDT)
$424 09/14/2023 4:50:41 pm (CDT)
$414 09/14/2023 4:50:40 pm (CDT)
$395 09/14/2023 4:50:29 pm (CDT)
$385 09/14/2023 4:50:29 pm (CDT)
$354 09/14/2023 4:50:06 pm (CDT)
$344 09/14/2023 4:50:05 pm (CDT)
$313 09/09/2023 7:36:50 am (CDT)
$303 09/09/2023 7:36:50 am (CDT)
$239 09/09/2023 7:36:33 am (CDT)
$229 09/09/2023 7:36:33 am (CDT)
$219 09/09/2023 7:36:19 am (CDT)
$209 09/09/2023 7:36:18 am (CDT)
$110 09/08/2023 10:38:46 am (CDT)
$100 09/07/2023 10:26:22 pm (CDT)