Captivated by Lovely Ludlamite

Several crystals of ludlamite sit atop a phosphatic nodule in this Mineral of the Week. The specimen was recently discovered in Cabeça do Cachorro Claim, São Gabriel da Cachoeira, Amazonas, and is presented by Luciana Barbosa, for auction through All photos are the same specimen.

By Antoinette Rahn

I’m a bit of a sucker when it comes to green minerals and gems, especially when the description includes mention of “apple green” color. Perhaps it’s the Irish heritage I possess that draws me to green minerals and gemstones; I’m not sure. Regardless, when I saw the ludlamite specimen shown here listed among the minerals for auction through, I was captivated.

Another striking feature of this and most ludlamite specimens is the prismatic crystal habit. There is something about prisms that draws me in and leaves me wondering what path the mineral had taken to get to where it was at that moment that I saw it. Typically, ludlamite, which is considered a rare phosphate mineral, is found in granite pegmatites. This fact speaks to its discovery in the Wheal Jane mine of Cornwall, England.

The discovery of this dynamic mineral belongs to the man after whom it is named, Henry Ludlam. Ludlam discovered the mineral in 1876, according to information at

The next time you come across an apple-green mineral, be sure to take a few minutes to admire its beauty and composition. You never know; you may be staring at the uncommon ludlamite.

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