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This large Pyrite crystal cube is embedded in matrix from the Victoria Mine, Navajún, La Rioja, Spain. The Spanish mountainside that has produced the stunning perfect pyrite cubes that have become famous around the world. This occurrence, developed and operated solely to produce pyrite specimens, is called the Mina Ampliación a Vitoria (the Victoria Mine).
- Approximate Measurements of Cube & Matrix -
Weight: 2 lb. 2 oz. / 985g
(The Pyrite Cube inside the matrix is measured at 1.5” x 1.5”)
The name Pyrite comes from the Greek word “pyr” meaning “fire,” and was named such because it was found that sparks would fly from it if struck against another mineral (best if Iron or Steel). In early times, this sparking ability gave man one way of creating fire; in later times, this ability made it popular for use in early firearms devices such as the wheel lock. Today Pyrite also carries the name of “Fool’s Gold” for the simple reason that many throughout history have mistaken it for Gold because of its similar visible structure, metallic luster and brassy yellow color. Ironically, Gold is often found adjacent to Pyrite deposits, and the only thing foolish about finding “Fool’s Gold” would be in not searching a bit farther! Pyrite is easily distinguished from Gold; Pyrite being lighter in color and much harder, whereas it cannot be scratched with a fingernail or knife as Gold can be. But even though Pyrite is a fairly hard mineral, its crystals are known to break and crumble, as it is brittle. Even though Pyrite contains a high percentage of Iron and is abundant, it is not used as a source for Iron (the primary iron ores being the Iron Oxides, Hematite and Magnetite), but it was mined as a source for Sulfur during WWII in order to produce sulfuric acid, an important chemical used in industry.*
*Description comes from the Crystals & Jewelry .com website.
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