The Mineral Phosphosiderite
What is Phosphosiderite?
Phosphosiderite is a relatively rare mineral first discovered in 1858 and named in 1890 after its constituents of phosphate and iron. 'Phospho' comes from phosphate and 'siderite' from the latin 'sídēros' meaning iron. This naturally occurring form of iron phosphate can only be found in a small number of locations worldwide some of which include Germany, USA, Portugal, Chile and Argentina. Although once known as metastrengite this name is now virtually obsolete.
Phosphosiderite is mainly used for lapidary purposes, stones can often exhibit a distinctive lilac colour may also feature fine yellow spidery veins.
On Mohs scale of mineral hardness it grades 3½ to 4 and as well as being a soft stone it's also brittle so must be handled with care.
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