Unfair business practices of some moldavite sellers on the Internet

Unfortunately some deceptions are difficult to unmask before purchasing on internet. I would like to describe a few tricks of some sellers and I hope that this article will help you choose a quality genuine moldavite.

Moldavite pictures

Especially on ebay or other auction portals some sellers use in their auctions different photos in the main “auction image” and in the actual auction description. If you go through the list of auctions, you will see a different moldavite than the seller is really offering for purchase. So always double check whether the photos in the description match the one in the main auction image.

Another unfair practice is in the line “you will receive a moldavite”. In such auction there is only a photo of “a big lot” of moldavites and the seller will choose one of them. What is more, such moldavites are usually damaged due to bad storage as the stones rub each other, which leads to abrasion and broken edges.

Some dishonest sellers try to mask a damage of their moldavite. The most frequent sharp practices are:

  • Missing photos from one side of the moldavite
  • Photos taken only against a light source – the moldavite is shined through – you don’t see the moldavite surface
  • Taking pictures of moist (wet) moldavite. The stone looks shiny. It’s a good way to mask an abrasion of its surface

Description of a moldavite

Weight and dimensions

An honest seller always provides dimensions of the moldavite and its weight. Sometimes it is difficult to find these parameters in a description and sometimes this information is missing completely. But we don’t want to buy a pig in a poke, do we?

Moldavite without description of weght and dimension - solt for $150 on ebayThis moldavite was solt for $150 on auction (ebay).

Weigth (rough estimate):  1 – 5ct
No special property. Only this one low quality picture.

Phew, it’s really very expensive moldavite.


A seller “forgets” to mention a damage or a chip-off. Most often the description omits information about abrasion. In combination with not very detailed pictures you might buy a low quality moldavite.


Hedgehog from Besednice

Genuine hedgehog from Besednice

A usual deception is an incorrect description the locality where the moldavite comes from. You can see a “Moldavite from Besednice”, a “Hedgehog”, etc. describing a moldavite which was found in a completely different locality. The reason is clear. Moldavites from Besednice are much more expensive than moldavites from other localities. Unfortunately the locality Besednice is mined out and you can buy a Hedgehog only from collectors ( In Besednice there is only very small amount of moldavites left – in a big depth and hard bedrock).

Sometimes the information about the origin is completely missing. It isn’t a problem if you aren’t looking for a moldavite from a particular locality but it could be a little complication if you want to resell such stones later on

Treated moldavites

Repair of chipped or damaged moldavites

Stones with a chipped part are grinded and an artist cuts new texture., sometimes followed by etching in strong phosphoric acid.

Shoddy repair:

Etched damage:

 Chemical polishing of moldavites

Chemically polished moldaviteThis method is very often used by jewellery makers who make jewellery from low quality moldavites. The polishing raises its gloss and removes abrasion and small damages. Unfortunately the polishing ravages the original moldavite surface – such moldavites aren’t in a natural state. Strong chemicals – acids – are used in this process.


Please be careful when choosing moldavites and always double check …


2 thoughts on “Unfair business practices of some moldavite sellers on the Internet

  1. Thanks so much! I bought a lot of pieces including besednice, I have now located at least 5 spots of chips or glossy areas I didn’t notice that much before. Thanks for sharing your knowledge, as prices go up, it is important for buyers who are buying and paying for quality, and not just getting a piece for the sake of it. It is important to inspect them like diamonds.. after spending a substantial amount on jewelry pieces and raw, I am armed with so much more knowledge after you have explained and shown so much.
    My eyes are very good, but in a few of your pictures, it is very very hard to spot sometimes what you are speaking about, for example the grinding or etching by artist is really well done. I have seen acid etched pieces and it looks sandblasted and very noticeable.. WOW. The hand sculpted or textured pieces, it is still hard to tell. If you can buy locally, do that.. I did buy off the internet and missing sides, and photo angles covered up a lot of the damage.

    Thanks again, this website is incredible knowledge!! I appreciate you sharing so much, I hope it helps others as much as it will help me!!

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