Three Large, Shiny Pyrite Cubes in Matrix - Navajun, Spain

These are lustrous, natural cubic pyrite crystals that are still partially embedded in the rock from the famous Victoria Mine near Navajun, Spain. The crystals have a wonderful, golden metallic luster and formed naturally. There is one large exposed cube in the cluster which is 1.37" wide. The entire cluster is 5.5" wide and the rock has been cut flat, allowing for aesthetic presentation of the specimen without the need for a display stand.

The rock has been painstakingly removed from around the cubes using mechanical tools. The cubes have not been repaired or remounted.

At first glance some people assume that these pyrite cubes are man-made, but the amazing thing is that they are natural! Pyrite from this location is famous for its beautiful shine, near-perfect cubic formation, and sculptural appearance. Because the matrix rock is soft, the cubes often come loose during collection. Care is taken during preparation to stabilize, repair, and make sure everything is remounted in its natural position: no specimens are composites. This means that nearly all of the pyrite cubes still in the rock from this locality have been remounted, and most clusters of multiple cubes have been stabilized.

The "Ampliación a Victoria" pyrite deposit is located 3 kilometers northwest from Navajún town in the Alcarama mountain chain. The history of mining in the area goes back to Romans mining for silver. Modern galena mining led to discovery of the pyrite in 1965, and since then specimens from this locality have been sought out by collectors worldwide. The largest crystal found to date was over 19 centimeters and weighed 9.5 kilograms!

FeS2, otherwise known as pyrite or 'Fool's Gold', contains about 47 percent iron and 53 percent sulfur. It gets the name 'fool's gold' because of its brassy golden color. The name pyrite comes from the Greek word pur meaning "fire": in ancient times pyrite was struck against flint to create sparks and start fires.
Victoria Mine, Navajun, Spain
Cluster 5.5 x 3.4", Largest cube 1.37" wide