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Rare opals donated

The Candle of Life, estimated to be worth $345,000, was among those opals donated to the SA Museum. Source: Tony Lewis, SA Museum.

Chris McLoughlin, Rare opals worth more than $1m donated to SA Museum, ABC News, 25 February 2016

More than $1 million worth of rare opals have been donated to the South Australian Museum.

The donations were a spin-off from the museum’s recent opal exhibition which broke records in both visitor numbers and revenue.

The donated items included an opal called the Candle of Life, which is an opalised belemnite “pipe” derived from fossilised remains of a 100-million-year-old cuttlefish.

It has an estimated value of $345,000.

Nick Kollias is an opal valuer and said the recent exhibition – marking the centenary of the first opal find in SA – was culturally significant as the number of opal miners was steadily falling.

“Most of the rarest and most valuable opals, opal specimens and opal fossils are in private collections and very difficult to secure for public exhibition,” he said.

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Council of Australasian Museum Directors, c/o Ms Daryl Karp, Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House PO Box 3934 Manuka, Australian Capital Territory 2603 Australia, © CAMD 2021
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