Quartz is a hard, crystalline mineral composed of silicon and oxygen atoms. The atoms are linked in a continuous framework of SiO4 silicon–oxygen tetrahedra, with each oxygen being shared between two tetrahedra, giving an overall chemical formula of SiO2. Quartz is the second most abundant mineral in Earth's continental crust, behind feldspar.

The Ancient Greeks referred to quartz as κρύσταλλος (krustallos) derived from the Ancient Greek κρύος (kruos) meaning "icy cold" because some philosophers (including Theophrastus) apparently believed the mineral to be a form of supercooled ice. Today, the term rock crystal is sometimes used as an alternative name for the purest form of quartz.

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