Go to 'thermo-' entry Go to 'dino-' entry Go to 'chondro-' entry Go to 'aero-' entry Go to '-logy' entry Go to 'thaumato-' entry Go to 'nano-' entry Go to '-sophy' entry Go to 'bucco-' entry Go to '-ism' entry Go to '-lysis' entry Go to 'galacto-' entry Go to '-anthropy' entry Go to 'pneumo-' entry Go to '-ploitation' entry Go to '-lithic' entry Go to '-sepalous' entry Go to 'onco-' entry Go to '-parous' entry Go to 'dermato-' entry Go to 'multi-' entry Go to 'dodeca-' entry Go to '-zoon' entry Go to 'vermi-' entry Go to 'crystallo-' entry Go to 'biblio-' entry Go to 'eco-' entry Go to 'juxta-' entry Go to 'facio-' entry
Affixes: the building blocks of English
Affixes: the building blocks of English

-lite

A mineral or fossil.

[Greek lithos, stone.]

This ending appears in a number of mineral names as an alternative to -ite1 when following a vowel. A few examples are: cryolite (Greek kruos, frost; the main deposits are found in Greenland), a mineral added to bauxite as a flux in aluminium smelting; oolite (Greek ōion, egg), limestone consisting of a mass of rounded grains made up of concentric layers; rhyolite (Greek rhuax, lava stream), a general name for fine-grained volcanic rocks typically occurring in lava flows; zeolite (Greek zein, to boil, because examples swell when heated), any of a large group of minerals consisting of hydrated aluminosilicates.

The ending is less commonly used to create the names of fossils: coprolite (Greek kopros, dung), fossilized dung; stromatolite (modern Latin stroma, stromat-, layer, covering), a calcareous mound built up of layers of lime-secreting cyanobacteria and trapped sediment; graptolite (Greek graptos, marked with letters, because impressions resemble markings with a slate pencil), a fossil marine invertebrate animal of the Palaeozoic era.

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