Iron Pyrite (large)
Size (cms) : 10.7 x 4.7 x 5.5
Large Iron Pyrite Mineral
Iron pyrite is a mineral that never ceases to amaze and fascinate and no collection of rocks and minerals would be complete without a nice piece. Also known as Fools Gold because of its gold-like appearance although the story about how that nickname came about is really not accurate. In many articles particularly online it's written that pyrite became known as Fools Gold during the great American gold rush of the early 19th century because gold prospectors mistook small pieces of pyrite for gold.
Although it sounds genuine there's nothing at all in the entire history of the great American gold rush that makes any reference to this and furthermore, despite the two materials initially looking quite similar it is quite easy to tell one from the other. The most obvious difference is that pyrite is not as yellow as gold and if the two minerals were placed side by side, you would be able to tell the difference immediately. Another easy way to tell whether you have a piece of pyrite or gold in your hand would be to bang it with a hammer. Although pyrite is harder than gold it's also brittle so would smash into hundreds of pieces. Gold on the other hand is a surprisingly soft metal that's ductile which means it has the ability to be drawn out or stretched without losing strength or becoming damaged. Were you to continuously pound a small piece of gold it would simply become flatter and flatter.
The crystals that form in pyrite can take a variety of different shapes although isometric (in the shape of a cube) is the most common.
There's no shortage of cube-shaped crystals in this solid pyrite mineral and it's an eye-catching piece that would certainly make a statement in any collection of rocks and minerals.