MESOLITE

07127

Locality

Kamshet Quarry, Poona District, Maharashtra, India

Dimensions (H x W x D)

17.8 x 36 x 16 cm

Weight

4,530 g

Description & Provenance

This mesolite is perhaps one of the most perplexing pieces in our current collection and is undoubtedly a fan favorite. Mesolite is a plentiful variety of zeolite that forms in transparent, colorless to white, acicular (needlelike) crystals. Each individual crystal tip has a vitreous, dipyramidal termination, creating a reflective window that both reflects light and allows one to peer into the crystal itself. Often, hundreds of these needlelike crystals will grow outwards from a central point, forming a radiating spray so dense, they sometimes create a domed semi-sphere. These structures are remarkably beautiful but extremely delicate. Mining, handling and transport often all take their toll, even when crystals initially form in dense semi-spheres, it is not uncommon for them to already be broken, even before extraction (due to geologic events). This makes fully intact examples extremely difficult to acquire. In addition to all that, mesolites are prone to detaching from their matrices (host rock), adding to the difficulty in keeping them undamaged. More often than not, these stunning specimens are reduced to broken tufts.

This specimen has hundreds, if not thousands of undamaged, ultra-thin mesolite crystals in astoundingly complete, spherical aggregates. They are so fine that collectively, they create what people typically perceive as soft, fur-like pompoms, which is contrary to their actual texture. The effect on the viewer is often delight and a sense of uncanny confusion (as well as an inclination to want to touch the specimen to verify their roused senses (an inclination that is advised against)). Accentuating these gorgeous bursts is a dark, shimmering matrix from which the mesolite seems to explode. Approximately 90% of all other examples that stay on matrix are found on pale matrices or companion minerals that are similarly pale, offering little to no contrast in color. This piece has the incredibly rare component of having a matrix with a distinctly contrasting color. The burnt orange coating on the matrix provides the perfect backdrop for the mesolite spheres to burst into view. This makes an impactful presence that is exceptionally rare, not just among others of its ilk but in all mineralogy. Notably, its matrix isn’t just beneficial for its aesthetics, it also aids in handling these delicate structures. One could not ask for a better canvas to both display and protect these exquisite yet delicate, star-like formations. To add to its beauty, the underside of its matrix has a contrasting, mint-green color. Miraculous in its formation, aesthetics, and pristine condition, it is a breathtaking example of its kind.

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