SUN PYRITE GEMSTONE JEWELLERY
The spectacular, disk-shaped concretions of radiating pyrite crystals known as pyrite suns are found in the coal mines close to Sparta, Illinois. They are also known as Sun Dollars, Miner's Dollars, or Marcasite Suns. Spartan pyrite suns often have a diameter of 3 inches. Over 4 inches, they begin to become progressively more scarce. They can be found 200-300 feet underground in coal mines in Illinois.
Just a few inches above the primary coal seam, in a layer of black, pyrite-rich shale known as the Anna Shale is the pyrite sun. These pyrite suns are obtained from the mines' spoil heaps or by the miners themselves. The availability of these pyrite suns entering the market has drastically decreased due to the closure of almost all coal mines close to Sparta.
Worldwide, marine shales include tiny disk-shaped pyrite formations, but only the coal mines near Sparta, Illinois, and China have recorded more extensive appearances known as pyrite suns.
Origin: Sparta, Illinois. Treatment: Pure gemstone. Colour: Pale brass-yellow. Shape: Rounded disc.