Mineral Species Discovered in Canada and
Species Named after Canadians
by Laszlo Horvath
Mineralogist Special Publication 6, 2003.
Editor Robert F. Martin. 372 pages,
hardcover, 3 parts,
7 appendixes, index.
The main part of this book describes
the 206 minerals that were first studied on the territory of Canada. Canada
holds the fourth place after USA, Russia, and Germany in mineral discoveries.
Description of each mineral appears on a separate page and includes the
chemical formula, symmetry, detailed geography of type locality, brief
description of the occurrence (bedrocks, mineral size, morphology, colour,
associated minerals, etc.), origin of the mineral name, type specimens
depository, and complete references to the first study and, in some cases, to
other significant works. If the discovery of a mineral has a history, it is
given in the "Comments" section, which also includes other additional
information on this mineral. The pages presenting the mineral species named
after people contain not only some facts about those persons, but also their
portraits (which seems to be very important!). Other illustrations in the book
include black-and-white photographs of minerals (basically SEM images),
crystal drawings, and scenic pictures of the type localities. An insert
features 39 colour photos of specimens of the most beautiful Canadian
The history of new mineral discoveries
in Canada, covering more than 220 years, is briefly described in the
introduction. Appendices in the end of the book include the chronology of
discoveries, geographic schemes of type localities, distribution of the
mineral species among chemical classes, and the author index. Another section
of the book is very interesting by discussing the names that were first
introduced to the mineralogical literature based on studies of Canadian
minerals (even though these names are considered obsolete from the standpoint
of the current mineralogical nomenclature).
A separate section describes 30
mineral species discovered outside Canada but named after Canadians -
mineralogists, crystallographers, and geologists. The descriptions in this
section are structured similarly to those in the main part, and here we can
also see the portraits of all those people.
The book is very complete and
detailed. These qualities are absolutely crucial for this kind of a reference
edition. Having experience of preparation of an analogous review for the
former USSR territory, I can fully understand what an enormous effort has been
made by the author to collect all the information and (especially!)
illustration materials for this book. It is a very interesting and captivating
reading, and, in spite of high saturation with facts, information is easily
accessible due to clear and convenient organization of the material within
each section. This remarkable work is a fundamental contribution to the
history of mineralogy and can be recommended for reading by both professionals
V. Pekov, PhD
Department of Mineralogy,
Lomonosov Moscow State University
You can order this book from
Mineralogical Association of Canada
78087, Meriline Postal Outlet,
1460 Merival Road,
Ottawa ON Canada.
online at www.mineralogicalassosiation.ca or by fax 1-418 226-4651.
Price $45 (postage