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>> Group(s) : oxides
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Its name comes from the Greek "kassiterôs", tin, or the name of the islands "Cassiterides" that produced this tin ore in antiquity, very likely islands very close to present-day Spain that would have given their name to this tin mineral, cassiterite.
It is the principal ore of tin, it has long been exploited in alluvial sources, such as gold has been, because it is very dense and concentrated into small pieces in the river beds. Indeed it is part of "grains" that focus at the center of the gold diggers pan.

Exploited sites

This is a very common mineral that is found especially in Bolivia (Araca), England (Cornwall), China, Czech Republic (Horni Slavkov-), North Vietnam (Pia OUAC), Australia (new South Wales), Spain, USA, Malaysia, Portugal (Panasqueira), Mexico, Namibia ... and also in France, La Villeder (Morbihan).

See pictures of the mines / other pictures

Use in jewelry

Very nice shine, shining brown color, it is faceted for collection.

Looking alike stones

rock crystal , diamond , enstatite , scheelite , sinhalite , titanite , vesuvianite , zircon

Historical healing properties

If we consider only the individual crystals, it would used at the Base chakra and its black variety would be a link with Mother Earth of whom it would absorb and restore the heat from the magma.

Chemical characteristics

tin oxide mineral

Physical characteristics

Main color : brown

Other colors : yellow

all shades of honey yellow to dark brown, sometimes colorless

Color of streak : white, yellow

Luster : adamantine, greasy

Hardness : 6.0 to 7.0

Density : 6.70 to 7.10

Cleavage : indistinct

Fracture : conchoidal

imperfect, difficult cleavage

Optical properties

Transparency : transparent, opaque

Refractive Index : 1.990 - 2.100

Double refraction : 0.095

Very strong uniaxial ( + )

visible double refraction : yes

Dispersion : 0,070 (0.035)

Pleochroism : variable

Number of colors : 3

It cannot be seen but also very strong : yellow green to brown, reddish brown

Fluorescence : none


Very short tetragonal prisms, very caractérisques twins.


Crystal system : tetragonal

Other informations

Astrological sign : Aries, Aquarius, Pisces

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  • Aries Aries
  • Aquarius Aquarius
  • Pisces Pisces

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