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Definition of SPHALERITE
: a mineral composed essentially of zinc sulfide that is the most important ore of zinc —called also zinc blende
Origin of SPHALERITE
German Sphalerit, from Greek sphaleros deceitful, from sphallein to cause to fall; from its often being mistaken for galena — more at spill
First Known Use: circa 1868
Sphalerite from Baxter Springs, Kan.—Courtesy of the Ted and Elsie Boente Collection; photograph, John H. Gerard
Zinc sulfide (ZnS), the chief ore mineral of zinc. It is found associated with galena in most important lead-zinc deposits. The most important deposits are in the Mississippi River valley (U.S.), Poland, Belgium, and North Africa. See alsosulfide mineral.