SEYMCHAN METEORITE SPHERE — AN EXTRATERRESTRIAL CRYSTAL BALL
Magadan District, Russia
Originating from a large Seymchan meteorite sample that underwent a number of stages of cutting, grinding and polishing in a sphere-making apparatus. Dazzling amber-hued olivine and peridot crystals are distributed throughout its highly-polished iron-nickel matrix.
53 x 53 x 53mm. (2 x 2 x 2in.)
Please note this lot is the property of a private individual.
The condition of lots can vary widely and the nature of the lots sold means that they are unlikely to be in a perfect condition. Lots are sold in the condition they are in at the time of sale.
Overall in excellent condition. Please note that weights and dimensions are approximate only and that the appearance and surfaces of meteorites might change if not appropriately cared for. Proper handling and humidity control are easy to accommodate and will ensure condition is maintained, please contact the department if you would like further advice on how to live with meteorites in your collection.
Less than 0.2% of all meteorites are pallasites, the most beautiful extraterrestrial substance known. Pallasites are formed at the core-mantle boundary of an asteroid that underwent a mixing of the core’s molten metal with stony olivine from the mantle. The result of olivine crystals suspended in an iron-nickel matrix is enchanting. As seen in this sphere, Seymchan also contains gem-quality olivine otherwise known as peridot (the birthstone of August). Recovered in Siberia, this wondrous three-dimensional presentation reveals aspects that are impossible to see on a flat surface. It appears the olivine is suspended or floating in a metallic sea—an image not far afield from the actual case of its parent asteroid adrift in the void of interplanetary space. Originating from a larger Seymchan mass, this machined sphere underwent a number of stages of grinding and polishing in a sphere-making apparatus in what is truly an alluring extraterrestrial crystal ball.
Christie's would like to thank Dr. Alan E. Rubin at the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, University of California, Los Angeles for his assistance in preparing this catalog note.
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