FeS₂ - Mohs Hardness: 6-6½. The name pyrite comes from pyrite lithos, which, in Greek, means 'stone which strikes fire' in reference to the tendency of the mineral to spark when struck against steel. In fact, pyrite was used for that purpose in early flintlock rifles. Pyrite has a nickname that has become famous - "Fool's Gold". The mineral's gold color, metallic luster, and high specific gravity often cause it to be mistaken for gold by inexperienced prospectors.
UT Department of Environmental Sciences
The University of Toledo
Digital Initiatives, University of Toledo Libraries
environmental sciences; virtual exhibitions
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