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Zoisite (Epidote Group) Ca2Al3(Si2O7)(SiO4)(OH) Hornblende

Orthorhombic, Biaxial (+), RI= 1.685-1.725 (Na,K)0-1Ca2(Mg,Fe2+,Fe3+,Al)5(Si,Al)8O22(OH)2

Pleochroism: Colourless, occasionally gray to gray-green Monoclinic
prismatic, {100} cleavage Form: slender prismatic to bladed crystals with diamond shaped cross section.
High relief, low birefringence and parallel extinction Pleochroism: Shades of green, yellow green, blue green and brown,
Interference colour: blue or greenish yellow pleochroic
Similar to clinozoisite which has inclined extinction. Cleavage: typical amphibole cleavage of 56 and 124
Common in medium grade carbonate bearing metamorphic rocks, may also be Twinning: uncommon simple and lamellar twins on {100}
found as accessory in mafic or ultramafic igneous rocks and hydrothermal Extinction: Basal section shows symmetrical extinction. Sections parallel to
alteration of plagioclase. (010) has extinction angle of 12 to 34
Saussuritization product of calcic-plagioclase RI: increases with iron content.
Altered products may be zoisite, chlorite, amphibole, and carbonates. Interference colour: Upper first or lower second order and often masked by
More calcium-rich portions of plagioclase in acidic rocks also are often mineral colour.

Aegirine NaFe3+Si2O6 (complete solid solution with augite) Riebeckite Na2Fe32+Fe23+Si8O22(OH)2 Monoclinic
Monoclinic Biaxial negative (Ambhibole Group, Glaucophane(Na-Mg-Al)-Riebeckite (Na-Fe-Fe) Series
Form: stubby to elongate prisms. sometimes fibrous having continuous solid solution series)
Pleochroism: Pale green, yellowish green or dark green. distinctly pleochroic, RI: 1.59-1.70
emerald green, dark green to grass green. Form: slender bladed or prismatic crystal. cross section shows typical
Cleavage: Two good Prismatic cleavage at about 87 diamond shape of amphibole
Extinction: 0 to 10 Pleochroism: dark blue to indigo to lavender blue and strongly pleochroic
RI: Increases with Fe3+ Cleavage: Typical amphibole cleavage
Interference colour: Second order to lower third order Extinction: Show symmetrical extinction in basal section and inclined in
(010) section (usually <10, max up to 22)
RI: Increases with increase in Fe2+. 1.69-1.70.
Interference colour: second order blue to brown

Titanite CaTiOSiO4 Zircon ZrSiO4

Monoclinic Biaxial positive Tetragonal Uniaxial positive
Form: Euhedral to subhedral, wedge or diamond shaped. Relief: Very high
Pleochroism: Shades of brown. non- to weakly pleochroic Form: Euhedral to subhedral with pyramidal terminations
Extinction: symmetrical extinction for diamond shaped crystals Pleochroism: Colourless to pale brown
RI: neither birefringence nor indices of refraction appear to vary Extinction: parallel and length slow
Interference colour: Second order to lower third order Interference colour: Higher order colours up to third order.
Apatite Ca5(PO4)3(OH,F,Cl) Biotite: K2(Mg,Fe)6Al2Si6O20(OH,F)
Hexagonal Uniaxial negative Monoclinic Biaxial negative.
Relief: moderate to high Form: Tabular and micaceous
Form: small euhedral to subhedral elongate prismatic crystals with hexagonal Pleochroism: Brown, brownish green, and distinctly pleochroic. Pleochroic
cross sections halos around radi0oactive minerals such as zircon, allanite and titanite.
Pleochroism: Colourless Cleavage: Perfect cleavage on {001}
Extinction: Parallel extinction, length fast Extinction: parallel or close to parallel (rarely going up to 9)
RI: 1.6 RI: Increases with iron content. Birefringence strong
Interference colour: grey with slight blue cast on it Interference colour: maximum up to third order

Olivine: MgFeSiO4 Fluorite: CaF2 Isometric

Orthorhombic Relief: Moderately high (RI<cement)
Relief: high Form: Cubes, anhedral grains
Form: Subequant, anhedral to euhedral Pleochroism: Colourless, non pleochroic. Violet spots
Pleochroism: Colourless to pale yellow. Darker colours corresponds to higher Cleavage: Perfect cleavage on {111}
iron content. Twinning: Penetration twins
Extinction: Parallel RI: 1.434
RI: Variable between forsterite to fayalite Also seen in section: Zircon, biotite and sericitised plagioclase
Interference colour: Very strong
Alteration: alters to Iddingsite and serpentine

Chlorite: (Mg,Al,Fe)3(Si,Al)4O10(OH)2.(Mg,Al,Fe)3(OH)6 Epidote: Ca2Fe+3Al2O(Si2O7)(SiO4)(OH) (forms solid solution

Monoclinic and Triclinic, Biaxial positive or negative with Clinozoisite (Ca2Al3O(Si2O7)(SiO4)(OH) Biaxial positive)
Relief: Moderate to Moderately High Monoclinic, Biaxial negative
Form: Plates or scales similar to mica. Relief: High
Cleavage: Perfect {001} that controls fragment orientation Form: Anhedral, granular, columnar or bladed
Pleochroism: Pleochroic. light to medium green. Shades of colourless, pale Cleavage: Perfect basal cleavage {001}
green, yellowish green or brownish green. Grains darker when cleavage trace Pleochroism: Light yellow-green to colourless
is parallel to vibration direction of the lower polarizer Extinction: Inclined between 25 to 40
Extinction: Not more than few degrees and rarely more than 9 RI: RI and birefringence increases with iron content.
RI: Increases with Fe, Mn and Cr content. Birefringence usually low. Interference colour: Upper first to third order colours. anomalous blue to
Interference colour: Anomalous brown, bluish or purplish (in optically green
negative variety), brownish (in optically positive positive variety)
Allanite: (Ca,Ce,La)2(Fe2+,Fe3+Al)3O(Si2O7)(SiO4)(OH) Chloritoid: (Fe2+Mg,Mn)2(Al,Fe3+)Al3O2
Monoclinic, Biaxial positive or negative (SiO4)2(OH)4
Relief: High (strongly metamict varieties may be low) Monoclinic (also triclinic) Biaxial (+ or -)
Form: Euhedral to subhedral columnar, bladed and elongate parallel to b axis. Relief: High
Hexagonal shaped for section parallel to (010) Form: Platy parallel to (001), roughly hexagonal basal section, rectangular,
Pleochroism: Shades of brown, red-brown, yellow-brown. Pleochroism in all may be foliated. Contains inclusions of associated minerals
varieties but metamict varieties is distinct. Pleochroism: green and pleochroic with green or grey green, blue grey, indigo
Extinction: Elongate sections show parallel extinction. Section cut parallel to or blue-green to pale green
(010) has (001) cleavage that shows inclined extinction (26 to 72) Cleavage: Perfect parallel to {001}
RI: RI and birefringence increases with Fe, Ce and REE content. Twinning: Simple and lamellae twins on {001}
Interference colour: Upper first to second order colours. Extinction: 0 to 18 to the trace of cleavage and length fast
RI: Substitution of Fe3+ for Al3+ increases the RI. Birefringence 0.010 to 0.012
Interference colour: Pale first order yellow. Some show second order

Kyanite: Al2SiO5 Tourmaline: Na(Mg,Fe,Al)3Al6Si6O18(BO3)3(OH,F)4

Triclinic Biaxial negative Hexagonal Uniaxial negative
Relief: High Relief: Moderate to High
Form: elongate bladed or columnar Form: Euhedral, stubby columnar to acicular, shows rounded triangular or
Pleochroism: Colourless and may show patchy light blue sometime. crudely hexagonal cross section. Longitudinal sections are roughly rectangular
Pleochroism weak from colourless, light violet blue to light cobalt blue Pleochroism: Strongly pleochroic. Elongate crystals are darkest when the long
Cleavage: Perfect {100}, {010} dimension is aligned perpendicular to the vibration direction of the lower
Extinction: inclined up to 30 on (100) section. Basal section has extinction polarizer.
angle <3 and sections parallel to (010) has around 7. Length slow Extinction: Parallel extinction and length fast
RI: Low Birefringence (0.012 to 0.016) RI: Increases with Fe content
Interference colour: First order Interference colour: higher second order and often masked by mineral colour

Sillimanite: Al2SiO5 Andalusite: Al2SiO5

Orthorhombic Biaxial positive Orthorhombic Biaxial negative
Relief: High Relief: Moderately high
Form: slender prismatic or fine fibrous. cross sections are more or less Form: elongate prism, near square cross section. chiastolite contains dark
diamond shaped inclusions that form a cross along the diagonals of the prism. Anhedral or
Cleavage: good {010} highly irregular masses.
Pleochroism: Colourless Cleavage: two good prismatic (110) cleavage
Extinction: Parallel length slow Pleochroism: Colourless
RI: Narrow range Extinction: basal section symmetrical
Interference colour: Second order Interference colour: First order grey and white
Augite (Clinopyroxene): (Ca,Mg,Fe,Al)2(Si,Al)2O6 Enstatite (Opx): (Mg,Fe)2Si2O6
Monoclinic Biaxial positive Orthorhombic Biaxial positive or negative
Relief: High Relief: Moderately high to high
Form: Stubby prisms elongate along c axis. longitudinal sections roughly Form: Euhedral crystals are stubby prisms. Longitudinal sections are roughly
rectangular and show one cleavage rectangular
Cleavage: two good cleavages at approximately 87 Cleavage: two good cleavage parallel to {210} prism face that intersect at 88
Pleochroism: colourless, grey, pale green, pale brown or brownish green non- and 92
pleochroic. Darker colours associated with Fe-rich content Exsolution: Commonly contains exsolution lamellae of augite
Extinction: Basal section shows both cleavage and show symmetrical Pleochroism: Colourless, Pale coloured with pinkish to greenish. Fe contains
extinction. Longitudinal section cut parallel to (100) show parallel extinction produces darker colours.
and are length slow. Longitudinal section parallel to (010) with Inclined Extinction: Parallel in longitudinal section and symmetrical in basal section.
extinction. RI: Increases with Fe content
RI: Increases with Fe content Interference colour: First order yellow or below
Interference colour: Lower to middle second order

Staurolite: Fe2Al9Si3.75O22(OH)2 Actinolite: Ca2(Mg,Fe2+)5Si8O22(OH)2

Monoclinic Biaxial positive Monoclinic Biaxial negative
Relief: High Relief: Moderate to High
Form: Prismatic and elongate parallel to c axis. Basal section six sided. Also Form: Columnar, bladed or acicular
forms anhedral masses. Cleavage: typical ambhibole cleavage that intersect at 56 and 124
Pleochroism: Pale honey yellow or brown. Pleochroic from pale Pleochroism: Colourless, pale green to deep green. Dark colour and stronger
yellow/colourless to golden yellow to reddish brown. Pleochroism are associated with higher iron content.
Extinction: Parallel to longitudinal sections and symmetrical to basal section. Extinction: Basal section shows symmetrical extinction. 11 to 28 extinction
longitudinal sections are length slow parallel to (010) section.
RI: Increases with Fe content RI: Varies with Fe content
Interference colour: First order white or yellow, sometime anomalous blue Interference colour: first order to mid second order

Plagioclase: NaAlSi3O8-CaAl2Si2O8
Triclinic Biaxial positive or negative Relief: Low
Form: Euhderal and anhedral grains. Tabular, lath shaped, elongate. cross section is more or less rectangular.
Cleavage: {001} perfect and {010} good and intersect at 93 to 94. not obvious in thin sections
Twinning: Albite (010); Pericline, Carlsbad: (010)
Pleochroism: Colourless
Extinction: Inclined
Interference colour: Increases with anorthite content. Birefringence 0.007 to 0.013. First order grey or white. Very calcic plagioclase has first order yellow
Sapphirine: (Mg,Al)8(Al,Si)6O20 Spinel Series: (i) Spinel: MgAl2O4 RI= 1.719
Monoclinic Biaxial positive or negative (ii) Hercynite: FeAl2O4 RI= 1.835
Relief: High (iii) Gahnite: ZnAl2O4 RI= 1.805
Form: Anhedral granules or granule aggregates common; Euhedral crystals (iv) Galaxite: MnAl2O4 RI= 1.920
are elongated along the c axis. Magnetite Series: (v) Magnetite: Fe2+Fe23+O4
Pleochroism: Colourless to shades of blue, Pleochroism- colourless, pale (vi)Jacobsite: MnFe2O4
pink, pale yellow, yellowish green, greenish blue, sky blue, lavender blue, Chromite Series (vii) Chromite: FeCr2O4 RI= 1.9-2.12
grey blue, blue-green. Isometric
Extinction: Oblique Relief: Very high
RI: Increases with Fe content in place of Mg Form: Usually Octahedron yielding triangle, square, or diamond shaped cross
Interference colour: Grey common, anomalous indigo grey may occur section. Anhedral grains also common.
Occurrence: Is a high-temperature mineral of both regional and thermal Pleochroism: Colour corresponds with hand sample colour, opaque.
metamorphism. It is characteristic of granulite amphibolite facies and Mg-rich, Occurrence: Spinel series common in highly aluminous or silica poor
silica-poor rocks. Is associated with corundum, cordierite, spinel, diaspore, metamorphic rocks associated with andalusite, kyanite, sillimanite, corundum,
sillimanite, anthophyllite, hypersthene and anorthite. Usually not associated cordierite and in regionally metamorphosed carbonate rocks.
with quartz, olivine, enstatite.
Cummingtonite-Grunerite: (Mg,Fe)7Si8O22(OH)2 Muscovite: KAl2(Al,Si3O10)(OH)2
Monoclinic Biaxial positive or negative Monoclinic Biaxial negative
Relief: Moderately High Relief: Moderate
Form: Usually columnar, bladed or acicular and elongate parallel to c axis. Form: tabular, micaceous flakes. Sericite is the name given to very fine
May be arranged in parallel or radiating aggregates. Basal section shows grained aggregates of white mica of phengite.
diamond shape of the amphiboles. Cleavage: Perfect on {001}.
Cleavage: Good on {110} intersecting at about 56 and 124. Pleochroism: Colourless.
Pleochroism: Colourless pale green or brown, pale yellow. Darker colours Extinction: Parallel to cleavage (maximum up to 3). Pebbly surface texture
associated with higher colour content. Cummingtonite shows higher seen near extinction called bird eye extinction.
Pleochroism than grunerite. Interference colour: May be as high as third order, vivid colours of second
Extinction: Symmetrical in basal section, section cut parallel to (010) have order common.
maximum birefringence and shows extinction at 10 to 15 (grunerite) and 15 Occurrence: Common in wide variety of igneous, metamorphic and
to 21 (Cummingtonite). Sections cut parallel to (100) shows parallel sedimentary rocks.
extinction. Longitudinal section close to cleavage trace is length slow.
RI: Increases with Fe content
Interference colour: Cummingtonite shows colours up to upper second order
and grunerite may be as high as mid third order.
Occurrence: Grunerite is found in metamorphosed Fe-rich sediments.
Cummingtonite is found in mafic metamorphic rocks such as amphibolite,
hornfels. Commonly found in volcanic rocks, diorite, gabbro, norite and
Sodalite: Na8(Al6Si6O24)Cl2 (Feldspathoids) Nepheline: Na3K(Al4Si4O16) (Feldspathoids)
Isometric Hexagonal Uniaxial negative
Relief: Moderate Relief: Low
Form: Six sided cross section, anhedral in plutonic rocks. Form: Anhedral to subhedral.
Colour and Pleochroism: Colourless, gray, very pale blue. non-pleochroic Cleavage: Fair cleavage parallel to {100} which are usually not seen in thin
Extinction: Isotropic. section.
Occurrence: Found in silica deficient alkali igneous rocks. Sodalite is found Colour and Pleochroism: Colourless.
both in volcanic and plutonic rocks. Found in nepheline syenite and related Extinction: Longitudinal sections through euhedral crystals are length fast.
rocks. Parallel extinction.
Occurrence: Common mineral in syenite, nepheline syenite, phonolite,
foidites and related alkali igneous rocks. Rarely associated with quartz which
is usually secondary.
It resembles feldspar but is Uniaxial (-ve) and lack good cleavage and has low