Before meteorites were truly and well understood, many people called them
“thunderstones,” because they fell to earth with a thunderlike noise (and often during
real thunderstorms). However, not all thunderstones were meteorites. It is believed that
some were small rocks swept up by high winds and dropped by the storms. Others may have
been conglomerates of sand fused by lightning. The Greeks believed that meteorites, or
“thunderstones” had mysterious properties and were worn as talismans. On the island of
Samos, a person wearing such a stone was invincible to lightning.