1.8" Quartz on Chrysocolla, Malachite & Calcite - Peru

This beautiful specimen consists of a bed of chrysocolla that is encrusted in a layer of quartz crystals. An association of calcite can be found beneath the quartz as well. It was collected from the Lily Mine in Pisco Umay, Peru and is 1.8" wide.

Silicon Dioxide, also know as SiO2 or Quartz, is the second most abundant mineral in the Earth's crust. Quartz crystals generally grow in silica-rich, hot watery solutions called hydrothermal environments, at temperatures between 100°C and 450°C, and usually under very high pressure. Quartz veins are formed when open fissures are filled with hot water during the closing stages of mountains forming, and can be hundreds of millions of years old.

Chrysocolla is a basic copper silicate that typically forms as a pseudomorph following other copper based minerals. The chemical formula is considered undetermined due to the varying substitutions of elements and water content in its chemical structure. However, there is a form of chrysocolla with an identifiable chemical formula of Cu2H2Si2O5(OH)4, that can be found in microcrystals.

Regularly, chrysocolla will form as botryoidal lumps and spheres, rarely forming visible crystals. It's also been known to form in both solid and fibrous veins, over fibrous minerals and in crusts. Known for its sharp and vibrant coloring, chrysocolla can display a wide variety of colors such as blueish-green, bright green, light blue to even sometimes multicolored specimens, depending on the atmosphere present during formation.

Malachite is an intense green copper-based mineral that can be found in a wide variety of forms. Malachite can grow in botryoidal masses, stalactitic formations, and reniform formations, typically as a tight cluster of fanning fibrous needles that make up a seemingly solid mass. As layers continue to stack during formation, a banded pattern can sometimes begin to take shape, which explains the rings in all shades of green that are seen on most polished malachite specimens.

Malachite results from the weathering of other copper ores and is very often found associated with other copper-based minerals such as Azurite and Chrysocolla. It can be found in copper deposits around the world, but the Democratic Republic Of The Congo is the primary source for polished malachite and mineral specimens.

Malachite has been prized since ancient times, first as a utilitarian copper ore, then as an ornamental stone. Due to it's value as a decorative stone, it's rarely mined as a copper ore anymore.
DETAILS
SPECIES
Quartz, Calcite, Malachite & Chrysocolla
LOCATION
Lily Mine, Pisco Umay, Ica Department, Peru
SIZE
1.8" wide
CATEGORY
ITEM
#98108