Mineralpedia Details for Cerussite
Named for the Latin cerussa, or ceruse, which means “white powder,” in reference to the mineral being known as white lead ore, which, when powdered, was used as “white lead,” a formerly common (at least in the West) lead pigment in paint and cosmetics. Cerussite is a relatively common and widespread mineral and can be found in oxidized lead deposits where it can, on occasion, be an important ore. Localities for fine Cerussite crystals include in Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Scotland, England, France, Italy, Russia, Tunisia, Morocco, Namibia, Iran, Australia, and the United States. Cerussite can fluoresce yellow under long-wave ultraviolet light. Occurs in many habits, commonly as colorless, twinned and with a distinct adamantine luster. Often as white with "jackstraw" habit. Associations with Galena and other secondary minerals are key to identification. Tabular or elongated colorless, white, pale yellow, smoky, dark gray, or black crystals. Also in granular, crumbly, stalactitc, prismatic aggregate, and massive forms.
Ref. Handbook of Mineralogy, Anthony et al (1995) and MSA at http://www.handbookofmineralogy.org/pdfs/cerussite.pdf
- Crystal System
- Crystal Habit
- Reticulate, Massive - Granular, Crystalline - Coarse
- Distinct, Distinct, None
- colorless, white, gray, blue, green
- Orthorhombic - Dipyramidal
- Brittle - Conchoidal
- View Cerussite
- View Cerussite
Cerussite from vein #5, Nakhlak mine, Anarak district, Iran
Generally, a web of reticulated twinned crystals
Cerussite from Flux mine, Patagonia, Santa Cruz Co., Arizona, United States
Delicate white prismatic crystals to over 1cm. This habit is termed "Jack Straw".
Cerussite from Carbonate Camp, Lawrence Co., South Dakota
Colorless to almost smoky Cassiterite crystal around 5mm.
Cerussite from Silver Queen mine, near Galena, Lawrence Co., South Dakota
Crystal group to 2cm.
Cerussite from Pribram, Bohemia, Czech Republic
Translucent, hemimorphic and twinned Cerussite crystals to 5mm on a Galena and hard shale matrix.
Cerussite from Tsumeb mine, Tsumeb, Namibia
Reticulated, Cerussite crystal showing multiple cyclic twinning and a single colorless crystal to 1cm with Malachite.
Cerussite from Mammoth mine, Tiger, Pinal Co., Arizona, United States
Reticulated Cerussite showing a fabulous 3D network of crystals.
Cerussite from Leadville, Lake Co., Colorado, United States
Compact adamantine-white Cerussite needles.