*Pyrite cut by Eidos
*Freshwater pearls, pyrite
*Sterling setting, findings, leverbacks
*Necklace is signed, numbered, dated

Length: 16" - 20.5" (41 cm -52 cm)
Centerpiece: 1.25" x 1.5" (3 cm x 4 cm)
Weight: 3.1 oz (88 gm)

Earring drop length: 1.25" (3 cm)
Earring weight:  gm ea (a nickel weighs about 5 gm)

Note this necklace would also be nice with the Pyritized Ammonite Earrings.

Item #588. Pyrite Necklace and Earrings (set) - $560

Necklace and
Earrings - $560:
    Necklace alone

Pyrite Necklace and Earrings

Pyrite Necklace
Pyrite Necklace Detail
Pyrite Necklace on model
Pyrite Earrings
Pyrite Necklace
Hover to zoom, Click to expand

Leigh cut this pyrite crystal to reveal an amazing landscape. We think immediately of fool's gold when pyrite is mentioned, but far from being a worthless fake, this crystal is beautiful and worthy in itself. the name pyrite comes from a Greek word meaning "fire." Wiki says it apparently was one of several types of stone that the Greeks used to start fire as it produces sparks when struck against steel. (Umm, wait. Steel? In ancient Greece? It turns out that iron smelting, probably using iron meteorites, started early and some curious bits of steel were likely a by product. At least one author thinks that steel was produced in India as early as 500 BC.) But to return to pyrite, the fiery stuff has many uses besides selling it to "fools" as gold, including use as an ignition source in early firearms and as the mineral detector in early radio receivers. Today it is used in photovoltaic solar panels and as a source of sulphur.

Not only does pyrite have a fascinating history, but its polymorph, marcasite, is widely used in jewelry... except the "marcasite" used in jewelry is actually pyrite. Did you follow that? Pyrite and marcasite have the same mineral composition (iron sulfide), but their crystal structure is different. (The polymorphic pair diamond and graphite is perhaps the most well known example of this strangeness.) So why is pyrite jewelry labeled "marcasite?" Perhaps it is good marketing, would you want "fool's gold" jewelry? Why not just use marcasite in marcasite jewelry then? Because its crystal structure is fragile and it tends to crumble. Worse, in some cases, it has the unfortunate tendency to react with moisture in the air and produce sulfuric acid, therefore marcasite is never used in jewelry. According to the references such as this one, "When a gemstone is sold as marcasite you can be quite sure it is actually pyrite."

We should note that Simmons mentions pyrite "imparts an immediate increase in vitality." Won't you order the set today? In addition to being an attractive and very unusual necklace it may help you though your busy week!