Rare Sugilite and Richterite Standing Freeform - 100mm, 500g
Locality - Wessels Mine, Hotazel, Kalahari manganese field, Northern Cape Province, South Africa Size – 100 x 60 x 48mm Weight – 500g
This rare sugilite standing freeform features rich, deep lavender purple tones with maroon red jasper, metallic silver ferro manganese and an exquisite, unusual vein of extra rare, rich royal blue richterite. It has been expertly polished to a high lustre and shaped to an attractive, artistic rounded form, able to stand proudly as a one-of-a-kind natural decor piece. Sugilite is increasingly scarce and highly sought after, making this extraordinary, large polished piece a serious collecors item.
Sugilite is a very rare cyclosilicate mineral that typically forms in massive, microcrystalline aggregates and dislays pink to deep lavender purple tones, caused by the presence of manganese, with some specimens also showing impressive chatoyancy or mottling where chalcedony is present. It is most commonly opaque, though some scarce specimens may also be translucent (referred to as 'gel sugilite'). It is also one of the most incorrectly pronounced mineral names, with many pronouncing sugilite with a soft 'g', as in 'gene', when it is correctly pronounced with a hard 'g', as in 'geese'. This mineral is also known as 'wesselite' because exceptional, translucent, gem-grade material is found in the Wessels Manganese Mine near Hotazel, South Africa. The finest, pure purple sugilite commands high prices and is considered one of the greatest purple gemstones in existence.
Sugilite in History
Sugilite was first found in Japan in 1944 as a brownish-yellow rock-forming mineral and named in 1976 by Nobuhide Murakami in honour of the petrologist Ken-ichi Sugi. An exceptional deposit was then later also found in 1979 in South Africa forming in attractive rich, bright pink and lavender purple colours, and this variety became highly sought after for use in ornamental carvings and jewellery.