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Minerals have the same chemical composition but small variations of the quantity and distribution of some elements will give the same mineral different colors.

Mineral Bulk Color and Streak Test Video

Colors of quartz

Pink quartz
Smoky quartz
Milky quartz
Clear quartz

Colors of calcite

Blue calcite
Clear calcite
Yellow calcite
Pink calcite

Colors of feldspar

Labradorite (gray feldspar)
Amazonite (green feldspar)
K-feldspar (pink/salmon)
Albite (white feldspar)

Do you think that one can identify a mineral on the basis of its color alone? Why or why not?




Some minerals have constant colors. Knowing these specific colors may be considerable help in identifying them.......

Malachite - always bluish/green
Pyrite - always gold
Garnet - always deep red
Magnetite - always black
Olivine - always green
Limonite - always yellow-orange

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©David Leveson and David Seidemann - Brooklyn College - Earth and Environmental Sciences