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Smithsonian Rock and Gem


This is the book that we recommend to people who do not have formal education in geology but who are interested in learning about rocks, minerals and gems (although "mineral" is not in the title, this book contains lots of information about them).
It is a great book for reading, reference or study. It has expert and accurate authorship. It is written in a very interesting style and has lots of excellent photos.
This textbook-size (7.0" x 9.25") guidebook presents interesting facts about hundreds of different rocks, gems, minerals and fossils. Contains 360 pages with hundreds of full-color illustrations and an index - a very nice book at a bargain price. Highly recommended.

Smithsonian Rock and GemTable of Contents

Origins 6
The Formation of the Universe8
The Formation of Earth12
Earth's Crust16
Collecting Rocks and Minerals20
Rocks26
Rock Formation28
Types of Rock30
Igneous Rocks32
The Giant's Causeway44
The Devil's Tower48
Sedimentary Rocks52
Caves and Caverns56
The Terra-Cotta Army62
The Painted Desert66
Stonehenge72
Metamorphic Rocks76
The Taj Mahal80
Minerals86
What is a Mineral?88
Identifying Minerals92
Mineral Associations96
What is a Crystal?98
Crystal Systems100
Crystal Habits102
What is a Gemstone?104
Gem Mining106
Gem Cutting108
Megagems110
Native Elements112
Egyptian Gold116
Hope Diamond124
Sulfides126
Sulfosalts142
Oxides146
Star Stones and Cat's eyes152
Fluorescent Minerals160
Hydroxides166
Halides170
Carbonates176
Russian Malachite186
Phosphates, Arsenates, and Vanadates188
Mesoamerican Turquoise198
Borates and Nitrates204
Sulfates, Chromates, Tungstates and Molybdates208
Silicates218
Tectosilicates218
Feldspars234
Feldspathoids242
The Standard of Ur246
Zeolites249
Phyllosilicates256
Single-Chain Inosilicates270
Double-Chain Inosilicates278
Chinese Burial Suites282
Cyclosilicates286
Sorosilicates294
Nesosilicates298
The Garnet Group300
Organic Gems314
The Amber Room316
Cultivating Pearls324
Fossils326
How Fossils are Formed328
The Fossil Record330
Plants332
The Arizona Petrified Forest334
Invertebrates337
Vertebrates348
The Dinosaur Quarry350
Glossary352
Index354
Acknowledgements359