• Chemistry: PbCuSO4(OH)2, Lead Copper Sulfate Hydroxide.
  • Class: Sulfates
  • Uses: mineral specimens
  • Specimens

Linarite is colored a bright azure blue color. This beautiful and somewhat rare mineral is usually found as crusts of small crystals. Even with the small crystals, the color is always intense. Azurite is a mineral that can be easily confused with linarite. However, linarite does not react at all to dilute hydrochloric acid. Linarite is formed from the oxidation of lead and copper minerals such as galena and chalcopyrite. The color is impressive for the tiny sparkling crystals. One look at the mineral will convince most collectors that they need an example of linarite in their collections.


  • Color is bright azure blue.
  • Luster is vitreous to adamantine to earthy in massive specimens.
  • Transparency crystals are transparent to translucent.
  • Crystal System is monoclinic; 2/m
  • Crystal Habits include prismatic crystals and more rarely platy to tabular, all crystals tend to have multiple facets. Crystals are always tiny to small growing off encrustations on host rocks. Also as earthy masses.
  • Cleavage is perfect in one direction but only seen in the larger crystals.
  • Fracture is conchoidal.
  • Hardness is 2.5.
  • Specific Gravity is approximately 5.3+ (very heavy for translucent minerals, but hard to obtain from encrusting specimens)
  • Streak is blue.
  • Associated Minerals are galena, chalcopyrite, brochantite, malachite and cerussite.
  • Other Characteristics: some specimens show an alignment of crystals.
  • Notable Occurrences include Tiger, Arizona and Butte, Montana, USA; Leadhills, Scotland; Spain and Argentina.
  • Best Field Indicators are crystal habit, associations, color and lack of reaction to acid.
LINARITE specimens:
(hover for more info)
LINARITE specimen lin-1
$ 55.00
Dims: 1-3/4" x 1-1/4" x 3/4"
Wt: 1.37 oz
Blanchard Mine, Sunshine #1, Socorro Co., New Mexico, U.S.A.
One of the more unusual specimens that I have seen, this little Linarite thumbnail is rather heavy for its size. That is because the Linarite is coating a cubic galena crystal. That is not too unusual, seeing as how galena is often associated with Linarite. However, there is more to the specimen than just that! We'll start with the galena crystal; coating it is a layer of chrysocolla- it may be turquoise, but I doubt it, because on top of the chrysocolla layer is a layer of drusy quartz that spills off to the side, making up most of the small amount of matrix that is on the specimen, and forming a few noticeable crystals. Finally, thin, dark blue blades of Linarite hug the drusy quartz surface... That's quite a selection of material for such a small specimen! Two sides of the galena cube are exposed, showing fresh cleavage planes where the specimen was removed from the host rock.
no photo
lin-1 ($ 55.00)
Blanchard Mine, Sunshine #1, Socorro Co., New Mexico, U.S.A.
LINARITE specimen lin-2
$ 55.00
Dims: 1.9" x 1.2" x 1.0"(4.8 x 3.0 x 2.5 cm)
Wt: 1.60 oz.(45.4 g)
Sunshine #1, Blanchard Mine, Bingham, Socorro Co., New Mexico, U.S.A.
This Linarite specimen shows a surprising amount of the deep blue mineral on a quartz and galena base. It occurs in thin, prismatic crystals that are too small and intergrown to effectively view, even under 10-power magnification. The blue color is intense, though, and with the sparkle caused by countless prism and termination faces, gives the cluster a brilliance that is unusual for such a small amount of material. Scattered around the cluster are small formations of green crystalline brochantite, along with many quartz crystals. All of this rests on a bed of quartzite that partially covers a piece of cubic galena; however, none of the galena is visible, due to a dull beige material coating all that is not covered by the quartzite. There are earthy patches of Linarite, brochantite and possibly a bit of chrysocolla on this material, which may be some form of massive cerussite- can anybody out there tell me? It is one of the nicer pieces of the few Linarite specimens that I have seen.
no photo
lin-2 ($ 55.00)
Sunshine #1, Blanchard Mine, Bingham, Socorro Co., New Mexico, U.S.A.
LINARITE specimen lin-3
$ 32.00
Dims: 3.8" x 2.3" x 2.0" (9.7 x 5.8 x 5.1 cm)
Wt: 10.56 oz.(299.6 g)
Sunshine #1, Blanchard Mine, Bingham, Socorro Co., New Mexico, U.S.A.
Although the Linarite on this specimen shows almost no evidence of crystal form, it covers a large area of the host rock and its bright blue color makes it easily visible. It appears to be little more than a very thin coating on the granular quartz base that accompanies another thin coating of a green mineral (either brochantite or malachite, it's difficult to tell which) with similar characteristics. There are a few round depressions in which appear to be partial nodules of the green mineral, but there is no other evidence of any form. There is enough Linarite in one area to see some crystalline tendencies and a pearly-to-vitreous luster, but these traits are best seen under magnification.
no photo
lin-3 ($ 32.00)
Sunshine #1, Blanchard Mine, Bingham, Socorro Co., New Mexico, U.S.A.
LINARITE specimen lin-4
$ 56.00
Dims: 2.2 x 1.2 x 0.8" (5.6 x 3.0 x 2.0 cm)
Wt: 1.64 oz. (46.6 g)
Blue Bell Mine, San Bernardino County, California, U.S.A.
A flattened mass of heavily intergrown sprays of fine Linarite needles rests on the brown host rock of this thumbnail specimen. None of the needles appear to exceed 0.3" (8 mm) in length, and all appear to be in good condition due to their compact nature. However, this also means that their monoclinic fibrous forms are very difficult to study. Some sprays show a pearly luster that accents their bright blue coloration, and individual crystals would likely be at least translucent, though this crust transmits no light as far as I can tell. A few pale blue and green copper minerals coat the other side of the host rock, which appears to contain a noticeable amount of iron.
no photo
lin-4 ($ 56.00)
Blue Bell Mine, San Bernardino County, California, U.S.A.
LINARITE specimen lin-5
$ 72.00
Dims: 2.8 x 1.9 x 1.2" (7.1 x 4.8 x 3.0 cm)
Wt: 3.80 oz. (107.8 g)
Blanchard Mine, Bingham, New Mexico, U.S.A.
The quartz host rock of this hand specimen is partly covered with a thin, patchy crust of intergrown Linarite crystals. None of these crystals exceed 0.1" (3 mm) in length, and many are nearly microscopic in size. Their size and intergrowth make it impossible to effectively study their monoclinic form. All have a bright, azure-blue color and a pearly luster, and are translucent to transparent. They are accompanied by what appear to be several tiny brochantite crystals that also rest on the quartz base.
no photo
lin-5 ($ 72.00)
Blanchard Mine, Bingham, New Mexico, U.S.A.
LINARITE specimen lin-6
$ 30.00
Dims: 2.6 x 0.9 x 0.9" (6.6 x 2.2 x 2.2 cm)
Wt: 0.8 oz. (23 g)
Grand Reef Mine, Klondyke, Graham County, Arizona, U.S.A.
A crust of heavily intergrown, tabular, radiating Linarite crystals partly coats the rusty base of this small cabinet specimen. This crust is only lightly damaged in a few places, and appears to be made up of crystals that are up to 0.3" (8 mm) long. Though they are heavily intergrown, they appear to have reasonably good monoclinic tabular or bladed form. Their deep blue color resembles that of azurite, but their adamantine luster is a bit brighter. It is only translucent at best on this piece. A few tiny white nodules rest on the Linarite crust, along with one single, pale green crystal that I cannot identify; it appears to be trigonal in form.
no photo
lin-6 ($ 30.00)
Grand Reef Mine, Klondyke, Graham County, Arizona, U.S.A.
LINARITE specimen lin-7
$ 50.00
Dims:2.2x1.8x1.3" (5.6x4.6x3.3 cm)
Wt: 3.5oz. (100g)
Sunshine Tunnels, Hansonburg Mining District, Socorro cty., New Mexico
Lying atop a bed of drusy quartz, a perfect galena crystal formed. This crystal was in turned coated by very sparkly microcrystalline quartz. Finally, acicular sprays of linarite covered about one-third of the exposed galena crystal. The effect is extremely aesthetic. The galena crystal measures slightly more than 0.3" (0.8cm) on a side, and crystals of linarite reach 0.2" (0.5cm) in length. This specimen is undamaged.
no photo
lin-7 ($ 50.00)
Sunshine Tunnels, Hansonburg Mining District, Socorro cty., New Mexico
LINARITE specimen lin-8
$ 100.00
Dims:4.2x3.2x3.0" (10.7x8.1x7.6 cm)
Wt: 23.4oz. (664g)
Sunshine #2 Tunnel, Blanchard Hill, Socorro cty., New Mexico
A rich crust of brilliant azure-blue linarite crystals covers about 30% of the surface of this large cabinet specimen. The crystals are acicular, radiating on a flat plane. The crystals are tiny, but with a loupe, one can observe them (the best views of individual crystals are at the edge of the crust). There are a couple of dings on this specimen, overall, though, the damage is minor.
no photo
lin-8 ($100.00)
Sunshine #2 Tunnel, Blanchard Hill, Socorro cty., New Mexico
LINARITE specimen lin-9
$ 48.00
Dims:2.8x1.5x1.5" (7.1x3.8x3.8 cm)
Wt: 2.7oz. (76g)
Grand Reef Mine, Graham cty., Arizona
Excellent crystals of linarite to just over 0.1" (0.3cm) are found in a small cavity in the host rock of this specimen. These crystals are large enough that they may be examined without magnification. A dark blue in color, these crystals are in the form of terminated monoclinic prisms. One crystal at the side of the cavity is broken, although this is difficult to notice.
no photo
lin-9 ($ 48.00)
Grand Reef Mine, Graham cty., Arizona
LINARITE specimen lin-10
$ 35.00
Dims:2.1x1.4x0.7" (5.3x3.6x1.8 cm)
Wt: 1.4oz. (40g)
Sunshine Tunnels, Hansonburg Mining District, Socorro cty., New Mexico
This specimen consists of a sparkling azure-blue encrustation of linarite on quartz. Also appearing are radiating needles of an unidentified green mineral, possibly brochantite. This specimen is undamaged, and quite aesthetic.
no photo
lin-10 ($ 35.00)
Sunshine Tunnels, Hansonburg Mining District, Socorro cty., New Mexico


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