If you're a prospector looking for gold, knowing the answer can be the difference between being immensely wealthy and immensely poor. Many a miner has come upon what he thought was gold, only to discover that his dreams of wealth vanished when his "find" was analyzed.
What has come to be known as fool's gold is a mineral called iron pyrite. Since it is a yellow mineral with a brilliant luster, it can easily be mistaken for flakes of native gold in a rock.
Another reason the mistake is often made is that gold itself is frequently found where there are iron pyrites. Native gold is found mostly in quartz veins or in masses of iron pyrites. The water and wind wear away the quartz and pyrites, and the gold has weathered out of the rocks. This means that the pieces of rock around the lumps of gold have been washed away, freeing the lumps or nuggets of nearly pure gold.
The nuggets are washed down to the bottom of the valleys and become mixed with sand and gravel. In this form it is called alluvial or placer gold. The first gold that man found was placer gold.
But gold is also often found in the ores of other metals. Silver ore nearly always contains some gold. Copper ores quite often are combined with gold. Even sea water contains gold. The quantity, however, is so small compared with the amount of sea water that no one has been able to separate the gold from the sea. Yet, our oceans are so vast that the total amount of gold they would yield has been estimated to be about 10,000,000,000 tons. Now there's a nice project for some chemist of the future, to get the gold from the sea.
by Emile R6 years ago
I've read so many comments on this forum by 'believers' that they possess supernatural abilities. Everything from getting advice from God on a car purchase, to personally performing miracles, to saying the name of...
by Johnathan David8 months ago
What's the difference between a friend, a true friend and a best friend?I just want your viewpoints on the certain stages of friendship and what they mean to you..
by Jeff Berndt6 years ago
What's the difference between a matador and a toreador?The words get used almost as synonyms in English, but are they also synonymous in Spanish?
by Rohan Jagtap5 months ago
What is the Difference Between "On your mind" and "In your mind"?Facebook asks you in its status box, "What's on your mind?". What is the exact meaning of it? If I am talking about my...
by shazwellyn4 years ago
Gold - what is the difference between ct and k?Why is it that some gold is described as 9ct or 9k, for example. Is there a difference between these descriptions?
by cashmere6 years ago
What's the difference between a sun dried tomato and a regular tomato?
Copyright © 2018 HubPages Inc. and respective owners.
Other product and company names shown may be trademarks of their respective owners.
HubPages® is a registered Service Mark of HubPages, Inc.
HubPages and Hubbers (authors) may earn revenue on this page based on affiliate relationships and advertisements with partners including Amazon, Google, and others.