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When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?
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Don Lum




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PostPosted: May 19, 2013 00:03    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

"Knowledge is knowing the tomato is a fruit, wisdom is not putting in your fruit salad.”

Miles Kington

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PostPosted: May 19, 2013 15:00    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

Don Lum wrote:
"Knowledge is knowing the tomato is a fruit, wisdom is not putting in your fruit salad.” Miles Kington

I fully agree (exactly the same is valid for avocados, isn't it?).

And going back to the topic, strangely enough Mindat, by way of the admired and respected Rock Currier, admits Pyrite after ammonite as if it were a regular mineral specimen. And it is nothing less than from the collection of the Smithsonian Institute.

Photo copyright © Rock Currier, downloaded from Mindat.org - Creative Commons Attribution Licence - Some Rights Reserved.



0520427001274609192.jpg
 Description:
Pyrite after ammonite. Middle to late Jurassic. Specimen is from the collection of the Smithsonian Institute, Museum of Natural History #123770 (1973). Scale at bottom of image is an inch with a rule at one cm.
From Le Clapier, Cornus, Aveyron, Midi-Pyrénées, France
 Viewed:  7338 Time(s)

0520427001274609192.jpg


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Carles Curto
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PostPosted: May 20, 2013 01:12    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

Pyritized fossils (why not opalized fossils, i.e?) were usually admitted in most of the collections in the XIX and XX centuries. Currently, they are not so commonly included.
Some peripheral aspects of the mineralogy, as artificial and synthetic material, faceted and polished minerals, mining lamps and artifacts, old (or modern) photos and other documents, stamps… are freely added to the any collection.
I want especially note this aspect of “freely collecting”. Anybody having his own baggage of knowledge, aesthetic perception, interest, etc., the most important is to enjoy collecting, so, admit some “clearly mineralized” fossils in the collection must be a personal election, not a rule.
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Carles Millan
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PostPosted: May 20, 2013 09:02    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

Carles Curto wrote:
(...) the most important is to enjoy collecting, so, admid some “clearly mineralized” fossils in the collection must be a personal election, not a rule.

A very reasonable answer. All collectors are free to assemble their collection the way they like more. No questions asked.
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Singingstone48




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PostPosted: Jul 23, 2013 14:26    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

Carles,
Here are a couple examples from my own collection. I collected a bryozoan fossil from an outcrop near Kansas City. Bryozoans normally coat other objects on the seafloor. I accidently dropped it, and one corner broke off. When I looked inside I could see the internal structures of a brachiopod which had re-crystallized as calcite rhombs. Sitting in the middle of this hollow space was a 2 cm long white calcite scalenohedron. So this is a case of a fossil on a fossil with a mineral inside. Second, when I was in graduate school in Indiana I collected geodes near Bloomington. Often they were recognizable as crinoids, corals or brachiopods, but they were still geodes with interesting quartz crystals and occasionally calcite or Baryte inside.

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Bob Harman




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PostPosted: Apr 19, 2020 22:05    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

A very old thread is resurrected. A nice example of what Steve was referring to in his last post of 2013.

Quartz replacing a fossil brachiopod from Monroe County Indiana.
This is the rare "dewdrop diamond" variant as individual smoky quartz crystals
sparkle like dewdrops in bright sunlight. Bob



fullsizeoutput_2b82.jpeg
 Mineral: Quartz replacing a fossil brachiopod
 Locality:
Monroe County, Indiana, USA
 Dimensions: 7.5 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  2042 Time(s)

fullsizeoutput_2b82.jpeg



fullsizeoutput_2e6a.jpeg
 Mineral: Crystalline quartz (var smoky quartz) on microcrystalline quartz (var chalcedony)
 Locality:
Monroe County, Indiana, USA
 Dimensions: 7.5 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  2048 Time(s)

fullsizeoutput_2e6a.jpeg


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David K. Joyce




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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2020 08:02    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

Here is a mineral specimen disguised as a fossil. A gastropod, I think. It is as thin as an eggshell and totally composed of tiny calcite or dolomite crystals.


gastropod 5.jpg
 Mineral: Calcite
 Locality:
Amherstburg (Amherstberg), Essex County, Ontario, Canada
 Dimensions: 30mm
 Description:
Gastropod composed of tiny calcite crystals
 Viewed:  1984 Time(s)

gastropod 5.jpg


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Scot Krueger




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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2020 16:21    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

I had to ask myself the question many times when I decided to finally create a formal catalog of my collection. Since I have collected both fossils and minerals my whole life, I have many of both. So it was natural to create a flag in the database to declare whether a sample was a "fossil" or a "mineral" (or a rock, or jewelry, etc.). But I found there were a handful of examples that could easily fit either category. The attached photo is one such example. It is a fossil clam from Florida which is lined with beautiful golden calcite crystals. I finally decided the question by asking myself, if I had to house my fossils and my minerals in different buildings, which building would I put this in? Since I had bought it at the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show because I loved the golden calcites, I decided this one was a mineral specimen. But I have other, self-collected fossils which have calcites in the void space that are far from aesthetic enough to raise the question, and those I kept primarily as fossils, so they got the fossil tag.


Calcite in Clam.JPG
 Mineral: Calcite
 Locality:
Ruck's pit, Fort Drum, Okeechobee County, Florida, USA
 Dimensions: 10.5 cm
 Description:
Golden calcite in fossil clam (Mercernaria sp.) from Florida.
 Viewed:  1923 Time(s)

Calcite in Clam.JPG


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R Saunders




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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2020 16:35    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

Mercernaria sp. means edible Mollusk. Former Ruck's itt quarry, now closed to collecting.


calcite on bivalve.jpg
 Mineral: Mercernaria sp.
 Locality:
Ruck's pit, Fort Drum, Okeechobee County, Florida, USA
 Description:
 Viewed:  1916 Time(s)

calcite on bivalve.jpg



calite on bivalve.jpg
 Mineral: Mercernaria sp.
 Locality:
Ruck's pit, Fort Drum, Okeechobee County, Florida, USA
 Description:
 Viewed:  1916 Time(s)

calite on bivalve.jpg


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Bob Harman




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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2020 16:50    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

Scott's example and R Saunder's examples are minerals associated with fossils.

Calcite crystals associated with clam shell fossils from Ruck's pit in Florida.
Mine and David J's are quartz or calcite replacing the fossil.

The association of the 2 or the replacement by one of the other are 2 very different processes.

The original posting was what to call the example: fossil or mineral.
With the association of the 2, there is both a mineral and the fossil, not one or the other. Bob
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R Saunders




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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2020 17:21    Post subject: Re: When can a fossil be also considered a mineral?  

Bob Harman wrote:
Scott's example and R Saunder's examples are minerals associated with fossils.

Calcite crystals associated with clam shell fossils from Ruck's pit in Florida.
Mine and David J's are quartz or calcite replacing the fossil.

The association of the 2 or the replacement by one of the other are 2 very different processes.

The original posting was what to call the example: fossil or mineral.
With the association of the 2, there is both a mineral and the fossil, not one or the other. Bob


Bob, both of mine came from a man thinning out his collection. One was in a free rock pile. Any idea which came first, the yellow calcite then the Mollusk settled over it or did the calcite from in the shell remains? or any body's guess?
Bob Saunders
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