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(sēr`əsīt), colorless to white or gray mineral, sometimes yellowish or greenish, transparent to opaque, very brittle, crystallizing in the orthorhombic system and occurring also in granular and massive form. It is a carbonate of lead, PbCO3, formed by the action of carbonate and bicarbonate solutions on galenagalena
or lead glance,
lustrous, blue-gray mineral crystallizing usually in cubes, sometimes in octahedrons. It is the most important ore and the principal source of lead.
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. It is an important ore of lead widely distributed throughout the world and found associated with galena and other lead minerals.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a mineral; lead carbonate, PbCO3. Cerussite contains minute amounts of Ca, Zn, Sr, and Mg. It crystallizes in the orthorhombic system, forming columnar, dipyramidal, or tabular crystals. It often occurs in the form of stellate clusters of twinned or triplet crystals. It is usually found in the form of granular or sinter aggregates. A white, yellowish, or brownish gray mineral, it has a density of 6,400–6,600 kg/m3 and a hardness of 3.0–3.5 on Mohs’ scale. Cerussite is brittle. Under an electron beam it often gives off a greenish blue light.

Cerussite is a common secondary mineral in the zone of oxidation of lead deposits and occurs in association with anglesite, vanadinite, limonite, and other minerals. It is used mainly as an ore of lead and in the production of white mineral pigments. Deposits in the USSR have been found in Eastern Transbaikalia, the Altai, and Kazakhstan. There are also deposits of cerussite in the United States and Australia.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


PbCO3 A yellow or white member of the aragonite group occurring in orthorhombic crystals; produced by the action of carbon dioxide on lead ore.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Picard is richly and amusingly informative on fashion and beauty aids, homes and gardens, and "parties of pleasure." Fashionable women suffered hoops and restraining stays, which she helpfully illustrates; they wore "silks woven in Spitalfields" by their hard-driven poor sisters (in sweatshops, in effect, as far removed from sight as those in "underdeveloped" countries today); they were poisoned by the white lead ("ceruse") used in cosmetics to combat wrinkles and wore mouse-skin strips to realign eyebrows.
(60.) The white lead-based powder of ceruse was a staple of feminine cosmetics in traditional times.
After six to fourteen weeks, the chemical reaction was complete, transmuting the "blue bed" into a "white bed." The pots now overflowed with the frothy ceruse. The white lead encrusting the buckles often grew so thick as to crack the vessels.
heresy of the alders, lighthouses, quick cricket, earthenware of the souls, ceruse of the darkness
Ceruse, a base for fucus or red paint, was made of white lead and vinegar, and sublimate of mercury, used for whitening the skin, was also a dangerous substance.