Collection: Smithsonite

Smithsonite is often confused with Hemimorphite, despite the particularities that each of these two minerals display.

Smithsonite and Hemimorphite were believed to be the same mineral until 1803 when James Smithson, the British chemist and mineralogist, described them as two distinct ones:

  • Smithsonite - Zinc Carbonate
  • Hemimorphite - Zinc Silicate

Distinguishing Smithsonite from Hemimorphite implies knowing their basic properties that can help you identify your stone and avoid further confusion. Some collectors recommend the following test to distinguish Smithsonite from Hemimorphite: place a small piece of the mineral into 10% hydrochloric acid; if you notice CO2 bubbles, it's Smithsonite; if it dissolves, becoming gel-like, it's Hemimorphite.


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