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Hypersthene is a common mineral in the pyroxene group that rarely forms distinct crystals. Its name is from a Greek word meaning "over strength," referring to its hardness. It is usually brown, green or gray with vitreous to pearly luster and displays a brilliant coppery metallic surface sheen.

Hypersthene Polished
Hypersthene Classification
Common Name Hypersthene
Species Enstatite
Hypersthene Optical Properties
Transparency Transparent - Opaque
Dispersion Strength: Weak Fire
Refractive Index 1.673-1.731
Birefringence 0.01-0.016
Optic Character Biaxial
Optic Sign Negative
Polariscope Reaction Doubly Refractive (DR)
Fluorescence SWUV: inert
LWUV: inert
Pleochroism Dichroic, strong bluish-green and brownish-red
Hypersthene Characteristic Physical Properties
Hardness 5-6
Streak White Or Gray
Specific Gravity 3.400-3.500 Typical:3.450
Toughness Poor
Inclusions Hypersthene displays a copper red schiller or sheen caused by tabular inclusions of hematite and goethite.
Luster Vitreous, Pearly
Fracture Uneven
Cleavage Good, in one direction
Hypersthene Chemistry & Crystallography
Chemical Name magnesium iron silicate
Chemical Formula (Mg,Fe)2Si2O6
Crystal System Orthorhombic
Chemistry Classification Silicate

Hypersthene Colors

  • Green Hypersthene Green
  • Gray Hypersthene Gray
  • Brown Hypersthene Brown

Alternate Names

Enstatite, Ferroan Enstatite,

Countries of Origin

Canada; China

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Tim Matthews


Tim Matthews

Tim Matthews is President and Chief Executive Officer of Jewelry Television® (JTV), as well as a member of the company's Board of Directors. He oversees and leads all aspects of the company's powerful omni-digital retail platform that uniquely specializes in fine jewelry and gemstones. His passion for business and gemstones has led him to become a recognized expert in the field of gemology. He is a life member of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) and has earned Gem-A's highest degrees, the Gemmology (FGA) and Diamond (DGA) diplomas. He is also a Graduate Gemologist (GG) of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and has also completed GIA's Graduate Diplomas in Diamonds, Colored Stones and Pearls. Under his leadership, JTV has become the leader in the sourcing and selling of color gemstones and jewelry.

This page was created on June 27, 2014.

This page was last edited on October 24, 2019.