Purpurite is a manganese iron phosphate mineral with an orthorhombic crystal structure.
Its manganese and iron content is responsible for its reddish-purple to deep rose colour. The greater the amount of manganese and iron in the stone, the darker its shade.
Specimens with only trace amounts of manganese and iron can have lavender or pink colour.
It is an opaque stone with a dull, satiny lustre. In terms of hardness, purpurite is rated only 4 to 4.5 on the Mohs scale.
This makes the mineral too soft for jewellery applications. Although lapidaries fashion purpurite into cabochons in a way that reveals its striking purplish rose colour.
Learn more about this gorgeous purple stone in our blog: What on Earth Is Purpurite?