Quartz is the most common mineral on Earth. It has been known since ancient times, and it is unlikely that a single individual could be named as its discoverer.
The earliest mention of the mineral was made by Theophrastus, a student of Plato and Aristotle, in approximately 300 B.C. The first printed reference to "quertz" was made in 1505 in Germany. Later that century, the present spelling was first used. It was also referred to as crystallum, silicum, silex and silice. Quartz is a natural form of silicon dioxide, and varieties are found in many metamorphic, igneous and sedimentary rocks.