Pyrite Stone takes its name from the Greek ‘pyr’ meaning fire. This designation alludes to the sparks it produces when iron is struck on itself. The Greek Dioscoride named it thus in year 50 AD. Long before its denomination, pyrite stone was used in prehistoric times for the same reason: to make fire. Ancient American Indians used pyrite for its reflective qualities, allowing them to craft mirrors. During the gold rush, many unfortunately confused pyrite with gold. In ancient Greece, pyrite stone was used for the making of jewellery, such as bracelets and necklaces. It was not until much later in 1845 that this stone was officially distinguished by its current name, designated by Wilhelm Karl Ritter von Haidinger.
During the 20th century, pyrite stone was used as a sulphur. It’s peak was in 1985 where 18% of the world’s sulphur came from pyrite. Today, this figure has dropped to 8%, corresponding to around 6.6 million tonnes extracted per year. 90% of this volume alone comes from China. Unlike haematite or magnetite, pyrite stone is not used to make steel as its extraction cost is much higher. Suffice to say that this stone is widely used in industry, even today.
Pyrite stone is also used in the manufacturing of sulphuric acid, in powder metallurgy deposits in the production of gold, copper, nickel or cobalt. Its use can also be found in radio reception, modulating the amplitude in crystal radios. Finally, pyrite is often used in the construction of foundations where it is an essential element in some countries.
Pyrite stone is composed of crystals with a dodecahedral shape with multiple pentagonal faces that are commonly called pyritohedrons. Taking a closer look at pyrite, it is primarily composed of pyrometric and octahedral crystals with a cubic habit. Its hardness varies between 6 and 6.5 depending on the deposit where it is extracted. Its colour equally varies between gold and grey with a metallic lustre. Unlike many other stones, pyrite dissolves in nitric acid, and becomes magnetic once it rises in temperature.
Pyrite stone is found abundantly in deposits but also in meteorites. Among the deposits in question, the primary are found in Spain, France, Italy, Peru and Slovakia.
Mentally, pyrite offers is unique in its radiance as it has many physical qualities (due to its metallic lustre) and also spiritual and intellectual qualities (due to its golden colour). It is a stone of realism, strength, resistance and positivity. Pyrite offers organisation to the wearer and those who have difficulties in this area.
Pyrite stone is excellent at improving memory and fostering creativity. Its combination of fire and iron revitalises and imparts the energies of the earth’s magma.
Physically, pyrite stone undoubtedly helps to preserve our memories. It stimulates our intellectual abilities. In addition, it purifies the lungs and respiratory system, so it is perfect for those who have breathing difficulties. Due to its high iron content, pyrite is excellent at curing anaemia. It reduces tiredness and increases our capacity for intellectual work.