DIRK WIERSMA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DIRK WIERSMA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Galenite (also know as Galena) is lead sulphide (PbS), the main ore for lead, often associated with silver and then an ore for silver as well. It occurs in hydrothermal veins or as a replacement mineral in limestone and dolomite. It usually has a grey metallic lustre as in this sample, and a cubic crystalline habitat, that shows as octahedral crystals or cubes.Marcasite, here interspersed in the Galenite, is an iron-sulfide (FeS2) similar to pyrite with its golden or golden grey lustre, but falling in the orthorhombic crystal system (pyrite is cubic). The crystals are often tablet-shaped but the habitat also may be massive or reniform.This specimen is from near Vinitrov in the Czech Republic. Actual width is 160 mm.
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