The name pyrite is derived from the Greek word for fire, given the name because striking two pieces together can produce sparks. With a hardness ranging from 6 to 6.5, this metallic yellow iron sulfide has earned the familiar nickname, "fools gold." Pyrite demonstrates many crystal patterns, one of the most spectacular being large perfect cubes. The ancient Incas used pieces of pyrite as mirrors. This mineral is believed to enhance willpower and help overcome bad habits. It can also help boost creativity and establish a "can-do" attitude toward life. Pyrite is found world-wide, with important deposits in Spain, Italy and Peru.
Iridescent rainbow pyrite was recently discovered near the Volga River in Russia. It offers a shimmering rainbow of colors and is found in the form of "drusy," meaning a fine layer of miniature crystals coating a matrix.