15PR09A Pyrite
Huanzala Mine, Huallanca District, Dos de Mayo Prov., Peru
8.0x 4.1x 5.3 cm

A nice cluster of octahedral pyrite crystals from Huanzala.  Pyrite has been known form this locality for decades, and I would consider this to be one of the most (if not the most) prolific mine in the world, in terms of the sheer tonnage of specimens produced.  For the last several years however, very little material of good quality has escaped-- over 5 trips to Peru, only this trip and the first yielded what I would consider to be good pieces from Huanzala, all the pyrites I brought back in between were from Racracancha.  

This piece is a cluster of octahedral crystals-- the locals call these "triangulos" ("cocos" as the dodecahedrons, "chispas" are the groups of small crystals you see in gift shops, and "cubos" are self explanatory.)  This piece is partially contacted on the back (it has to be attached to the mine wall somewhere), and looking closely I see only one 2-3 mm chip well hidden on the front--but I had to look *very* closely.  With that said, this thing is in exceptional condition, and is incredibly sharp.  You can even see the growth patters on some of the faces.  

This was one piece from a medium sized lot that I purchased.  As the person who sold them to me put it-- the group this belonged to was selected from "many tons" of specimens, and judging from what I usually see, I am inclined to believe him.  This is a top example from the mine, in this size range.  

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