Elon Musk and the mineral Muscovite share a name, kind of. I’ve joked about it on Twitter before but made this meme the other day and it’s kinda gotten a few likes. (Although, not by Elon as of right now,). Did you know that Muscovite also shares it’s name with the Grand Duchy of Moscow? How cool is that?

 

Muscovite is a very common form of mica and comes in mostly black or brown. Chromium gives is a lovely green color and one well-known form of Muscovite is Fuschite which sometimes occurs with the mineral corundum (usually Ruby).

 

Some fun names that have been given to this shiny mineral are Cat Silver, Muscovy Glass, both of which appear in texts as early as the 17th Century.The name, Muscovite, came from a guy by the name of Johann (no that’s not a typo of my name!) Gottfried Schmeisser when he wrote his book, System of Mineralogy.

 

Photo by i-rocks.com

I find Muscovy Glass fascinating because of it’s historical background with the Tsardom of Russia. It was called Muscovy Glass because it was often used as windows on high temp furnaces and ovens. It was able to do this because Muscovite cleaves into very thin sheets that withstand high temperatures. They look like little windows when you hold them to the light and see through it.

 

 

What Is Fuschite?

 

ruby fuschite by Gem Rock Auctions

This mineral is a mix of potassium aluminum silicate and sometimes has a splash of chromium for that shiny green color that has it’s own name, Fuschite. Muscovite was often used as windows on high temperature furnaces and ovens because of how it’s made: with high temp resistant natural sheets.

Fuschite is often confused with Zoisite since both minerals often have Ruby occurring with them, however Zoisite is a completely different mineral (and is also known as Tanzanite when it’s blue). Fuschite was named after a German mineralogist, Johann Fuchs.