There is an electronegativity difference of 1.2 between $\ce{Fe}$ and $\ce{Cl}$. Then why it is covalent?

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Electronegativity alone can't tell you everything. For example, $\ce{MnO}$ is mostly ionic, while $\ce{Mn2O7}$ is markedly covalent. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 23, 2017 at 13:42
  • $\begingroup$ Even from basic electronegativity difference you can tell it - 1,2 < 1,7 so why it should be unusual according to you? $\endgroup$
    – Mithoron
    Commented Feb 23, 2017 at 21:48

1 Answer 1


usually when metal is bonded to a non-metal, they are bonded together by ionic bond but this is not the only condition , the more important condition is the electronegativity that must be greater than 1.7 to be sure that the bond is ionic if not like in your example 1.2 then the bond will be polar covalent bond which means that the electronegativity difference is not enough for the electrons to be lost by iron and gained by chlorine but they are shared and shifted toward the chlorine atom as it has the greater electronegativity.


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