This thumbnail-sized stilbite ball is of the deepest golden hue I’ve seen in these to date. The form of this one different, as it has a central bulge of crystals, ringed around the centre by a broader aggregate to give the outline its overal oval appearance. It is a floater, crystallized all around, with no point of attachment. In excellent condition, a few tiny nicks and a missing crystal, all visible on very close inspection – not perfect if you’re looking for perfection, but not distracting. Beautiful colourful stilbite!
About These Stilbites
These beautiful yellow stilbite balls from Mali made their debut at Ste. Marie 2014. Although there has only been a small trickle of fine specimens since then, the deposit at Diamonkara has once again produced a number of very fine pieces. As in 2014, moderate-to-significant damage was almost ubiquitous, and high-quality specimens like the ones in this lot are very uncommon. As a side note, although there has been a push to sell these as specimens of stellerite, none of the analytical work done to date has confirmed any stellerite identification, to my knowledge (and I am aware some analytical work has been done).
As for the specimens themselves, the good Diamonkara pieces are absolutely some of the nicest and most distinctive stilbites I’ve ever seen from anywhere, with beautiful colour and form. They are perhaps not yet appreciated for what they are – these are striking, colourful display specimens of a mineral that is often pale and drab.