- Meteorite Type: Iron, IVA
- Weight: 5.8 kilograms
- Approximate Measurements: 241 mm x 133 mm x 84 mm
- Additional Information: Most Gibeons are quite angular in appearance, likely the result of in-flight explosions, or terrestrial weathering, or both. In rare cases, complete individuals are recovered, and this specimen is one such example. Weighing in at an impressive 5.8 kg (12 3/4 lbs), this gorgeous iron meteorite shows abundant regmaglypts (thumbprints) on its surface — indicators of ablation during its furious flight through Earth’s atmosphere. It is presented in as-found condition with attractive dark red and brown desert patina. In one photo it seems to resemble an owl; in another an elongated boot, hence its name. Please note the field number “5.8,” likely painted by the finder at the time of its discovery in the Namib Desert. Field numbers are usually seen to add a modest amount of uniqueness, value, and collectibility to a meteorite, but this number could easily be removed if so desired.
Further: This fine specimen shows an extremely rare small natural hole and its position is indicated in one image by a white string.
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Iron IVA, Found in Namibia, 1836
Once a popular favorite among collectors, this essential iron meteorite has all but disappeared from the marketplace and superior examples such as this generate a great deal of interest. First recorded in 1836 in the Namib Desert in Western Namibia, the Gibeon iron was part of a massive and ancient fall. No crater has ever been found, but specimens have been recovered from a very large area. A long sojourn in the desert has resulted in surfaces taking on a rich and attractive natural patina that ranges from ocher, to red, to copper.
Gibeon is a medium octahedrite and it displays a complex and beautiful Widmanstätten pattern when cut and etched in the lab. Combine the appeal of its etch pattern with its exceptional stability and resistance to rusting and you have relentless demand from jewelers and watchmakers. Many Gibeons were cut up in order to fashion rings, wrist watch faces, and even guitar picks, but this piece is too fine to suffer such a fate. Cutting into slabs was a sad end for many other examples of this grand meteorite that journeyed across the solar system and then lay in the deserts of Namibia for thousands of years.