Long ago, below the surface of what we now call Brazil, a slender blade of pink tourmaline, a semi-precious gemstone, pierced the top of a pink-and-blue tourmaline to create a natural wonder. Found in the Pederneira Mine in 2011, the unusual rock was special enough to merit a name: the Great Divide. Now it’s being offered to one lucky buyer for the jaw-dropping price of $1.2 million.
“It’s an iconic piece, and one of the finest to come out of the Pederneira Mine,” says Dennis Tanjeloff, CEO and president of Astro Gallery of Gems, the Manhattan dealer offering the rare rock.
Discovering the Great Divide was the first bit of luck. Taking it out of the mine intact was another. “What gives the tourmaline specimen value is removing it from the pocket without damage,” Tanjeloff says. “It’s very difficult to remove without breaking the tourmaline.”
Unlike other examples, the Great Divide required only a single repair: a barely-visible stitch on the right side of the tourmaline blade. The specimen itself is relatively large at 6 inches by 7 inches by 7 inches, and includes albite (an opaque white material) and lepedolite (a lilac-gray mineral abundant in lithium). There’s not another one like it on earth.
“One thing that’s great about minerals is, like humans, they’re all unique,” says Tanjeloff. Whether this especially unique specimen can fetch the astronomical price that Tanjeloff has placed on it, of course, remains the million-dollar question.