/min"euhr euhl, min"reuhl/, n.1. any of a class of substances occurring in nature, usually comprising inorganic substances, as quartz or feldspar, of definite chemical composition and usually of definite crystal structure, but sometimes also including rocks formed by these substances as well as certain natural products of organic origin, as asphalt or coal.2. a substance obtained by mining, as ore.3. (loosely) any substance that is neither animal nor vegetable.5. Nutrition. any of the inorganic elements, as calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, or sodium, that are essential to the functioning of the human body and are obtained from foods.adj.6. of the nature of a mineral; pertaining to a mineral or minerals.7. containing or impregnated with a mineral or minerals.8. neither animal nor vegetable; inorganic: mineral matter.[1375-1425; late ME < MF, OF mineral < ML minerale (n.), mineralis (adj.), equiv. to miner(a) mine, ore ( < OF miniere < VL *minaria; min- (see MINE2) + L -aria -ARY) + -ale, -alis -AL1]
* * *IAny naturally occurring homogeneous solid that has a definite (but not fixed) chemical composition and a distinctive internal crystal structure.Minerals are usually formed by inorganic processes. Synthetic equivalents of various minerals, such as emeralds and diamonds, are manufactured for commercial purposes. Although most minerals are chemical compounds, a small number (e.g., sulfur, copper, gold) are elements. Minerals combine with each other to form rocks. For example, granite consists of the minerals feldspar, quartz, mica, and amphibole in varying amounts. Rocks are generally, therefore, an intergrowth of various minerals.II(as used in expressions)sulphide mineral
* * *county, west-central Nevada, U.S., on the California border (southwest). It consists mostly of arid mountains (including the Wassuk Range and the Excelsior Mountains) and valleys, but Walker Lake lies in the west-central part of the county and part of Toiyabe National Forest in the south. The large Walker River Indian Reservation is in the northwest. The county was formed in 1911, and the county seat is Hawthorne.The economy depends on gold and silver mining and various military- and government-related activities. Area 3,757 square miles (9,730 square km). Pop. (2000) 5,071; (2007 est.) 4,706.
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