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Benitoite is an intensely fluorescent (blue under UV light) barium titanium silicate that obtains its name from the place of its discovery, San Benito County in California. This is essentially the only location in the world that produced large gemmy benitoite crystals. The deposit is now largely exhausted. Benitoite forms beautiful sapphire-blue bipyramidal crystals (Trigonal system). The crystals grew in cavities in a glaucophane schist. Sometimes these same cavities are filled with white natrolite. If the natrolite is dissolved with strong acid, one is occasionally able to reveal hidden benitoite crystals. Shown above is a fine thumbnail-sized specimen of benitoite crystals exposed by etching away with acid the encasing white natrolite. This specimen has a pleasing array of well-formed benitoite crystals scattered over its surface. This is one of several fine specimens that I obtained from Bruce and Jo Runner during the 2002 Tucson show. (Specimen #M283, $45.00 Sold)