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Formula:   Ag   mineral photo

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Crystal:   Isometric  
Hardness:   2.5-3  
Spec. Gr.:   10.5 (pure)  
Streak:   Silver streak  
Cleavage:   None  
Location:   Guanajuato,

Xenophon, traveler and author, wrote in his Essay on the Revenues of Athens in 355 B.C. that the silver mines of Mt. Laurion were the economic mainstay of Athens for five centuries B.C. In all probability these were among the first silver mines in antiquity. In later years, major silver discoveries were made in Germany, Norway and Mexico. Discovered in Mexican mines were exceptional minerals such as proustite, argentite, polybasite and pyrargyrite. Guanajuato's Valenciana mine still produces fine silver specimens and ites "old town" is a wonderful place to visit.


Bibliography: Bancroft, Peter, Gem and Crystal Treasures, 1984, pg. 137-141.

Wolfgang, Paul, Mining Fare.

University of California, Santa Barbara—Department of Earth Science
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