In the early 1990s, exciting specimens (and cut gemstones) of transparent zincite from Poland began to appear on the market. It was soon discovered that the mysterious source of these pieces was a paint factory. Zinc oxide makes a reliable, non-toxic white paint that is used, for instance, in some sunblocks. When a smokestack in the paint factory was dismantled, it was found to be lined with radiating crystals of zincite, formed by condensation from the gases in the chimney-the odd crystal habits on this piece attest to that origin. As that chimney has now been torn down, no more of these accidentally man-made crystals are anticipated. This cabinet-sized specimen terminates in three large conjoined crystals and has an abundance of numerous transparent zincite crystals below.
Measures 5 x 5 x 2 ½ in
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