Quartz (Amethyst) D.50316 Click to enlarge image
Quartz (Amethyst) D.50316. Las Vegas, Vera Cruz Mexico. 8 x 5.5 x 5 cm. Registered 1996. Albert Chapman Collection Image: Stuart Humphreys
© Australian Museum

These sharp, lustrous and transparent purple amethyst crystals are a variety of quartz. They form an attractive group of radiating prisms. In ancient times, amethyst was believed to protect the wearer from becoming intoxicated. The name comes from the Greek amethystos, which means ‘not drunken’. The composition is silicon dioxide and the purple colour is caused by a tiny trace of iron and aluminium replacing some of the silicon.

The rich purple colour of amethyst has been appreciated for thousands of years, and the aesthetic crystal group featured in the specimen on the left, is certainly appealing. There is a colour variation along the crystals, with the crystal tips being a darker shade of purple.

Specimen details

  • Origin

    Las Vegas, Vera Cruz, Mexico

  • Size

    8 x 5.5 x 5 cm

  • Date

    Registered 1996

  • Collection number


  • Collection

Albert Chapman purchased both of these specimens from American Walter Lidstrom in 1971. Walter Lidstrom was a mineral dealer and agate collector but became one of the premier mineral dealers at the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show in the USA.

Quartz (amethyst)

Las Vegas, Vera Cruz, Mexico. 19 x 15 x 13 cm. D.50725. Albert Chapman Collection.

Quartz (Amethyst) D.50725
Las Vegas, Vera Cruz, Mexico. 19 x 15 x 13 cm. D.50725. Albert Chapman Collection. Image: Carl Bento
© Australian Museum

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