Dims: 3.8" x 2.7" x 2.6" (9.7 x 6.9 x 6.6 cm)
Wt: 11.6 oz. (329 g)
Tongren, Guizhou Province, China
This hand specimen consists of several Cinnabar crystals that rest amidst a thick bed of white dolomite, which in turn coats and cements a rather fractured dark gray limestone base rock. At least half of the crystals are damaged, and there are only two whose lengths exceed 0.3" (8 mm). If not an actual hexagonal prismatic form, all at least show a hexagonal outline somewhere along their prism lengths. They show a luster on their surfaces that borders somewhere between metallic and adamantine, and they all have the deep red coloration that is expected of Cinnabar. They are translucent at the very least, and may show some areas of transparence. The two largest crystals are a point of special interest, though; they grow towards each other at such an angle so that their terminations are interpenetrating (see the close-up image). The white dolomite crust consists of many intergrown rhombohedral crystals that have noticeably curved surfaces. They show a lot of damage and breakage.