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Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Opal bone

Photograph of a fossil bone replaced by opal (NMNH R29-01) from the National Mineral Collection
Photo by Chip Clark. Click to zoom.
Catalog Number NMNH R29-01
Locality Nevada, United States

From the exhibit

Beautiful opals come from Nevada’s Virgin Valley (above and below), where they formed in cavities left when buried tree limbs decayed. Though prized for display, these opals are seldom used in jewelry because they often crack.


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