Home > Lead Minerals – December 10 > MS1450 Minium


Minium is an oxide of lead, known especially for characteristic orange-red color. The name minium comes from an old Latin name for cinnabar, which often was admixed with this red lead oxide compound. In 1806, James Smithson published an account of the natural mineral equivalent.

Both Worner & Mitchell's 1982 Minerals of Broken Hill and Birch's 1999 Minerals of Broken Hill, indicate that minium at Broken Hill largely formed due to major underground mine fires in the 1890s-1900s. For this reason, Hazen et al. (2017) included minium in a list of 206 mineral species indicative of human mediated mineral species. This heavy hand sample consists mainly of fine-grained orange-red minium; scattered pockets of black microcrystalline silver and cerussite provide contrast.

Price: $450

Item code: MS1450

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