Villiaumite derived its name from the French explorer Villiaume. It has a typically bold red "carmine" color that is visually unique. Although its carmine-red color can be very attractive, it is very soft, cleaves easily, and is somewhat water soluble.
Villiaumite can be distinguished from other minerals by its crystal habit and color. It is commonly found associated with Amphiboles, Calcite, Eudialyte, Fluorite, Nepheline, Pectolite and numerous other minerals from sodalite xenolith environments.
Rarely cut as gemstones and collected as mineral specimens.
Villiaumite was described by Lacroix in 1908, and named after a French explorer who collected rocks from the Island of Los, Guinea, where it was first found. The mineral was extremely rare before 1982, but since then has been found more frequently in sodalite xenoliths in Nepheline Syenite composition rocks.
Rouma, the Islands of Los, Guinea, Khibina Massif, Kola Peninsula, Russia; Aris, Namibia; Colfax County, New Mexico, USA, Mont Saint-Hilaire, Quebec, Canada and Greenland.