Copper minerals: Showcase specimen and systematics

Copper minerals, especially the secondary compounds frequently found in the oxidized zones of Cu-bearing ore deposits, are safely placed among the all-time favourites of mineral collectors all over the world. The stunning variety of their colours and shapes has fascinated people since the first days of Cu mining. Some pretty examples for this diversity are provided by the specimen offered below, many of which stem from nowadays defunct mining locales.


Additionally, I can offer specimen out of a systematic collection of Copper minerals, comprising more than 90% of all specified Cu species. Please find more information here (link).  

JW-022 - Enargite, Rosasite & Serpierite - 200 €

Tsumeb, Otjikoto Region, Namibia

Size: 12.5 x 7.5 x 7 cm

360° video

Cluster of enargite crystals up to 15 mm size partially coated with green rosasite and mini rock crystals. There are several sprays of rare blue serpierite crystals distributed over the specimen.

JW-018 - Tennantite, Chalcopyrite & Quartz - 800 €

Cobre Mine, Concepción del Oro, Mun. de Concepción del Oro, Zacatecas, Mexico

Size: 13 x 12 x 9 cm

360° video and full resolution images

Rich clusters of tennantite crystals up to 2 cm size on white, drusy quartz crystals. One side of the specimen is covered with countless fine speckles of chalcopyrite. The tennantite crystals exhibit many faces with pristine metallic luster.

JW-002 - Cerussite and Malachite on Chalcocite - 500 €

Tsumeb, Otjikoto Region, Namibia

Size: 7.5 x 4.5 x 4.5 cm

360° video and full resolution image

A sculptural assembly of corroded chalcocite blades carries numerous translucent and lustrous cerussite crystals of up to 1 cm size. A botryoidal malachite coating covers most of the chalcocites and parts of some cerussites. Showy all around, this is a flawless specimen of attractive and rare paragenesis.

JW-004 - Chalcophyllite on Malachite - 1.600 €

Rancagua, Cachapoal Province, Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins Region, Chile

Size: 11.5 x 6.5 x 5 cm

Full resolution images

Exceptional locality specimen of this rare Cu-species. Numerous cluster of teal-blue chalcophyllite blades on massy malachite aggregates with some sprays of azurite adding colour contrast. The backside of the specimen was sawed (reminds me of a graffiti-sprayed brick from the dismantled Berlin Wall I once possessed :-). Ex R. A. Bideaux collection.

JW-005 - Azurite - 480 €

Aouli, Upper Moulouya lead district, Midelt Province, Drâa-Tafilalet Region, Morocco

Size: 10 x 8 x 4 cm

360° video and full resolution image

Interpenetrating azurite blades of navy blue colour on matrix. Corroded edges and faces alternate with lustrous sections what accounts for the contrast-rich appearance of the specimen.

JW-007 - Malachite ps. Azurite - 300 €

Tsumeb, Otjikoto Region, Namibia

Size: 11.5 x 5.5 x 3.5 cm

360° Video and full resolution images

Advanced pseudomorph stage of malachite replacing azurite. The cross-section shows a thickness of roughly 1-2 mm for the malachite layer (see video). Additional botryoidal malachite aggregates are scattered over the display side of the specimen. The simple term "matrix" does not at all embrace the character of the interesting piece of base rock of this specimen, holding several blue and green copper ore veins as well as cavities filled with quartz, calcite and azurite crystals.

JW-010 - Azurite (Chessylite) - 400 €

Chessy-les-Mines, Le Bois d'Oingt, Rhône, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France

Size:  7.5 x 5.5 x 2.5 cm

360° Video and full resolution image

Sparkling, blocky azurite crystals in the vug of a matrix piece fully covered with a bright-blue microcrystalline azurite coating. The prismatic habitus of the azurite crystals is rather rare at this classic French locale, also luster and color saturation are above Chessy average.

JW-020 - Calcite & Mottramite - 80 €

Tsumeb, Otjikoto Region, Namibia

Size: 9 × 5 × 4 cm

360° video

Lustrous, translucent calcite cubes and moss-green mottramite covering a piece of matrix. No significant damage.

Azurite with Malachite ps. Azurite - sold

Tsumeb, Otjikoto Region, Namibia

Size (WxDxH): 9.5 x 6.5 x 5.5 cm

360° video and full resolution images

A historic specimen from the early years of mining in Tsumeb at the beginning of the 20th century. A sharp-edged, filligree cluster of malachite ps. azurite resides in a nest of sharp azurite needles. The azurite crystals are translucent and under strong illumination exhibit intense blazing-blue color. Some minor contacts along the periphery. Ex E. M. Gunnell collection.

Calcite & Copper - sold

Houghton Co., Michigan, USA

Size: 8 x 6 x 4 cm

360° video and full resolution images

Heavily copper-included calcite scalenohedra and native copper on a matrix of basalt and prehnite. There are minute dispersed bits of copper giving the calcites themselves a rich copper background color overall, and still showing bright flecks of native copper inside. The main scalenohedron measures 2.5 cm. The specimen most likely stems from the Quincy Mine, where such pieces were found mostly in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Comes with former Cureton label.

Quartz, Azurite & Malachite - sold

M'Ssici, Alnif County, Tinghir Province, Souss-Massa-Draâ Region, Morocco

Size (WxDxH): 12.5 x 9.5 x 6 cm

360° video

Group of limonite coated quartz crystals with aggregates of azurite crystals partially pseudomorph to malachite, both of vivid color. The specimen is developed as a floater and free of notable damage. Find from 2011.

Bournonite - sold

Grube Georg, Willroth, Altenkirchen, Westerwald, Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany

Size: 4.5 x 3 x 2 cm

Cluster of highly lustrous and sharp bournonite crystals from one of the most classic European locales for the species. Several crystals exhibit the typical "cogwheel" twinning. Unfortunately, there are some contacts including a severe one at the main crystal.

(Meta-)Torbernite - sold

Musonoi Mine, Kolwezi, Katanga, Democratic Republic of Congo

Size: 7.5 x 5.5 x 4.5 cm

Rich cluster of forest-green torbernite blades on gossan matrix. Some minor contacts along the periphery.

Azurite partially ps. to Malachite - sold

Bisbee, Warren District, Mule Mts, Cochise Co., Arizona, USA

Size: 7 x 5.5 x 5.5 cm

360° video

Classic Bisbee rose from the former "Queen of copper deposits". Filigree scaled azurite blades partially altered to malachite on matrix.

Cuprite on Copper - sold

Chuquicamata Mine, Chuquicamata District, Calama, El Loa Province, Antofagasta Region, Chile

Size: 11.5 x 6.5 x 3 cm

360° video

Sparkling, metallic-grey cuprite crystals on a sculptural piece of native copper. No significant damage.

Azurite on Malachite - sold

Morenci Mine, Copper Mountain District, Shannon Mts, Greenlee Co., Arizona, USA

Size: 8 x 8 x 4 cm

360° video

Cluster of fine-scaled azurite balls with intense blue color on malachite coated matrix.

Azurite with minor Malachite - sold

La Sal, San Juan Co., Utah, USA

Size: 4.5 x 3 x 2.5 cm

360° Video and full resolution images

Floater piece fully covered by intense blue azurite wedges with some malachite patches. Typical examplar from a now defunct locale.

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Impressum & Copyright: Jonas Norpoth, Wilhelmshöher Weg 16, D-34128 Kassel