Formula: Ba(CO3)
Carbonate, barium mineral
Specific gravity: 4.289 to 4.293
Hardness: 3 to 3½
Streak: white
Colour: colourless, white, pale yellow; colourless in transmitted light
Solubility: Readily soluble in hydrochloric acid; moderately soluble in sulphuric and nitric acids

Hydrothermal environments

Witherite occurs typically, along with baryte and other Ba-bearing minerals, in epithermal (low temperature) hydrothermal mineral veins, usually resulting from the alteration of baryte. Other commonly associated mnerals include calcite, sphalerite and galena.

At Snailbeach mine, near Minsterley, Shropshire, England, UK, witherite occurs impregnated with hydrocarbon and overgrown by baryte (RES p271, 274).

Common impurities: Ca, Sr

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