Cinnabar (also known as cinnabarite) is a mercury sulphide mineral, as such, it is the primary ore for the element, mercury. A fairly soft mineral with a trigonal crystal habit, it comes in at 2 - 2.5 on the Moh's scale of hardness. It is generally found in massive, granular or earthy forms like these from Almaden, Spain, with very few occurrences of crystal forms or beds. Cinnabar is characterised by its bright brick red colour and was likely named for this very reason, its name being derived from the ancient Greek word kinnabari, a term believed to have been first used by Theophrastus alluding to its colouration. This mineral is the primary ore of mercury which is toxic and as such, these specimens are not suitable for handling by children and it is suggested that you was your hands immediately after handling the specimen. These specimens are supplied in a plastic display box with an information label.
*Remember to wash your hands immediately after handling cinnabar. It contains mercury and can be toxic. Upon purchase of the particular mineral specimen, you confirm that you are at least 18 years old. This mineral is not suitable for children.