Here is a really excellent AMETHYST specimen from a classic locality: La Genuina Amethyst Mine, 19 miles south of Artigas, Artigas Department, Uruguay, right on the Brazilian border. This is arguably the premiere locality anywhere in the world for such rich, dark, vibrant, colorful purple-violet amethyst. I purchased this fine specimen at the Tucson Gem, Fossil & Mineral Show direct from the family that owns and operates the mine.
Here is the story of the discovery of amethyst in Artigas, Uruguay: According to legend, in the 1700s, a wagon traveling from southern Brazil to Montevideo, Uruguay had an accident while crossing a small river near Catalan. One of the wagon's axles broke, and when the wheel hit a rock, which turned out to be a geode, it broke in half. The inside of the geode was filled with sparkling amethyst crystals in a deep purple color. The king of Spain was very interested in amethyst semiprecious stones, and the rock was carried back to Spain. Then, in 1850 two Germans found agate and amethyst in the Catalan zone. Initially, only the agate was exported, but by the early 1900s interest in the amethyst grew, and eventually Artigas became famous for its outstanding amethysts.
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