Anapaite is rare and beautiful phosphate mineral. Or is it? Some mineral purists would dispute anapaite's inclusion into the mineral kingdom. The reason is that anapaite has a somewhat organic origin. In true pure mineralogical tradition, a mineral must have inorganic origins (ie. it is not made by a plant or animal). Anapaite is found in some fossil shell remains. But does this mean that the shell or bivalve formed the anapaite or did it just provide the needed calcium or change the environment of crystallization (such as the pH) needed for anapaite to form?
If anapaite is excluded, it will be the mineral kingdom's loss! For anapaite is a truly beautiful mineral. Its lime green color is attractive and is a jewel inside the otherwise uncrystallized remains of an ancient fossil shell. The scene almost reminds you of a virtual green pearl.
The triclinic crystals of anapaite are indistinct and this is very diagnostic, believe it or not! Perhaps it is the way or the environment in which anapaite forms, but the crystals look more like glass shards than like true crystals. Despite the lack of distinct forms, anapaite crystals are very different and would be a nice addition to anyone's collection.