Optical quality Iceland spar calcite with box carved by Leif Karlsen.
Rhomb 65x45x35 mm
Photo: E. Skalwold
The specimen pictured was obtained by Leif Karlsen in Iceland; mine locality unknown. It is in its original unpolished cleavege rhomb state with some surface cleavege marks visible; otherwise it is like looking through lead glass crystal - except for the double refraction. The Vikings may have found it in this state if they were lucky or they may have found weather-worn rhombs. Optical quality calcite was once abundant in Iceland, predominately in the South-eastern side of the island where the Vikings first made landfall (removable spot on top is black tape applied for navigation experiments).