Pink Amethyst Choique Mine, Pehuenches, Neuquen, Argentina
These little quartz filled nodules grew in a bed of gypsum. They have not been colour treated and they are not rose quartz. Rose quartz usually doesn't form crystals and the colouration comes from small thread like inclusions of manganese, which these samples don't contain. The colouration in these little beauties is likely to come from inclusions of hematite. The colour may also be due to some replacement of the silicon ions in the silicon tetrahedra with Fe3+ ions. When naturally exposed to gamma radiation this produces purple colour centres and is what gives amethyst its famous colouring. Since pink amethyst is not purple and has not been naturally irradiated, it may not be correct to call it amethyst despite similarity in composition. However Pink Amethyst has become the most common name for this item from this area and so it would be more confusing to list it differently.
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