Infobox mineral
name = Calaverite
category = Telluride Mineral
boxwidth =
boxbgcolor =

imagesize =
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formula = AuTe2
molweight = 452.17 gm
color = Brass yellow to silver white
habit = Bladed and slender striated prisms, also massive granular
system = Monoclinic - Prismatic
twinning = Common on [110]
cleavage = None
fracture = Uneven to subconchoidal
tenacity = Brittle
mohs = 2.5-3
luster = Metallic
polish =
refractive =
opticalprop = Anisotropic
birefringence =
dispersion =
pleochroism = Weak
fluorescence= None
absorption =
streak = Green to yellow grey
gravity = 9.1-9.3
density =
melt =
fusibility =
diagnostic =
solubility =
diaphaneity = opaque
other =
references = [ [ Calaverite: Calaverite mineral information and data ] ] [ [ Calaverite Mineral Data ] ] [ [ CALAVERITE (Gold Telluride) ] ]

Calaverite, or gold telluride, is an uncommon telluride of gold; it is a metallic mineral. It was first discovered in Calaveras County, California in 1861. Its chemical formula is AuTe2. Its color may range from a silvery white to a brassy yellow. It is closely related to the gold - silver telluride sylvanite. Another mineral containing AuTe2 is krennerite. Calaverite represents a minor ore of gold and tellurium.

Physical properties

Calaverite occurs as monoclinic crystals, which do not possess cleavage planes. It has a specific gravity of 9.35 and a hardness of 2.5.

Chemical properties

Calaverite can be dissolved in concentrated sulfuric acid. In hot sulfuric acid the mineral dissolves, leaving a spongy mass of gold in a red solution of tellurium.


Calaverite occurrences include Cripple Creek, Colorado; Calaveras County, California, USA (from where it gets its name); Nagyag, Romania; Kirkland Lake Gold District, Ontario; Rouyn District, Quebec; and Kalgoorlie, Australia.

In the Kalgoorlie gold rush of the 1890s, large amounts of calaverite were mistaken for fool's gold, and were discarded. The mineral deposits were used as a building material, and for the filling of potholes and ruts. Several years later, the nature of the mineral was identified, leading to a minor gold rush to excavate the streets.

ee also

*List of minerals


*D. M. Chizhikov, V. P. Shchastlivyi, 1966, "Tellurium and Tellurides", Nauka Publishing, Moscow
*Klein, Cornelis and Hurlbut, Cornelius S., 1985, "Manual of Mineralogy" 20th ed., p. 289, Wiley, ISBN 0-471-80580-7
*Fortey, Richard, 2004, "The Earth", Harper Collins

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Calaverite — Calavérite Calavérite Catégorie II : sulfures et sulfosels Callaverite Creeple Creek – Colorado (USA) (2x1cm) …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Calavérite — Catégorie II : sulfures et sulfosels[1] Callaverite Creeple Creek – Colorado (USA) (2x1 cm) …   Wikipédia en Français

  • calavérite — ● calavérite nom féminin (de Calaveras, nom propre) Tellurure naturel d or, contenant environ 3 % d argent. calavérite [kalaveʀit] n. f. ÉTYM. 1890; de Calaveras, localité de Californie. ❖ ♦ Minér. Tellurure naturel d or (AuTe2) contenant 3%… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Calaverite — Ca la*ve rite, n. (Min.) A bronze yellow massive mineral with metallic luster; a telluride of gold; first found in Calaveras County California. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • calaverite — ☆ calaverite [kal΄ə ver′īt΄ ] n. [after Calaveras County, Calif., where first discovered + ITE1] a yellow to silver white, monoclinic mineral, AuTe2: an ore of gold, it contains a trace of silver …   English World dictionary

  • calaverite — /kal euh vair uyt/, n. a silver white mineral, gold telluride, AuTe2, containing a little silver: an ore of gold. [1865 70, Amer.; Calaver(as), county in California where first found + ITE1] * * * ▪ mineral       a gold telluride mineral (AuTe2)… …   Universalium

  • calaverite — kalaveritas statusas T sritis chemija apibrėžtis Mineralas. formulė AuTe₂ atitikmenys: angl. calaverite rus. калаверит …   Chemijos terminų aiškinamasis žodynas

  • calaverite — noun A mineral form of gold telluride AuTe …   Wiktionary

  • calaverite — n. type of gold ore, gold ore that contains a bit of silver …   English contemporary dictionary

  • calaverite — cal·a·ver·ite …   English syllables

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