American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Any of various altered basic igneous rocks colored green by chlorite, hornblende, or epidote.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Any one of various rocks, of eruptive origin, in general older than the Tertiary, crystalline-granular in texture, and of a dark-greenish color. The essential ingredients of the rocks formerly classed under the name of greenstone are tri-clinic feldspar and hornblende, with which are associated various other minerals in greater or less quantity, and especially chlorite, mica, magnetite, and apatite. The name is abandoned by some lithologists, but retained by many geologists as a convenient designation for those older eruptive rocks which have undergone so much alteration that their original character is in a measure lost, and cannot be made out except with the aid of the microscope, and not always with that help. The most important of these changes seems to be that the original augite has been converted into hornblende, while a still more advanced stage of alteration is indicated by the presence of chlorite, mica, and other minerals, the predominating color of which is greenish, and to this peculiarity the rock owes its name. While there can be little doubt that many of the so-called greenstones, or melaphyres and diorites, as rocks of this class have of later years been often designated, are altered basalts, there is far from being a general agreement among lithologists as to the proper limitation of these names. See basalt, diorite, melaphyre, trap.
- n. A very hard and close-textured stone used for putting the last edge on lancets and other delicate surgical instruments, etc.
- n. A name in New Zealand for several varieties of jade, specifically for pounamu or nephrite, found chiefly on the west coast of the Middle Island: formerly much used by the Maoris for weapons, implements, and ornaments.
- n. archaeology any of several green-hued minerals used for making various artefacts in early Mesoamerican cultures, e.g. greenschist, chlorastrolite, serpentine, omphacite, or chrysoprase
- n. New Zealand the green-hued minerals of New Zealand used by Māori to make tools, ornaments and weapons (any of three varieties of nephrite jade or one variety of bowenite)
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Geol.) A name formerly applied rather loosely to certain dark-colored igneous rocks, including diorite, diabase, etc.
- From green + stone. (Wiktionary)
“The soils of the Marcassin vineyard are 18–24 inches of gravelly loam over highly fractured rock of marine volcanic origin, known as greenstone or basalt.”
“Expedition brought back specimens of free gold found in basalt, apparently eruptive, and in corundophyllite, which the engineer called greenstone porphyry: silver appeared in the red sands, in the chloritic quartz, and in the titaniferous iron of the Jebel el-Abayz; the value being 265 to 300 francs per ton, with traces in the scoriæ.”
“MCKELLEN: This is greenstone, which is unique to New Zealand.”
“Khedivial Expedition brought back specimens of free gold found in basalt, apparently eruptive, and in corundophyllite, which the engineer called greenstone porphyry: silver appeared in the red sands, in the chloritic quartz, and in the titaniferous iron of the Jebel el-Abayz; the value being 265 to 300 francs per ton, with traces in the scoriæ.”
“Glass cases are filled with carved stone masks and small figurines (usually tomb finds), carefully carved in minerals like jadeite and greenstone, as well as dozens of elongated ovoid polished ritual axes called " celts " (bloodletting was practiced, but not with these), as meticulously positioned in the cases as they were in the tombs.”
“The golden figure was modeled on a purportedly Aztec greenstone carving called Tlazolteotl, considered to be a masterpiece by the Dumbarton Oaks Museum in Washington, D.C. In my research into the object's acquisition history, I discovered that a Chinese dealer in Paris sold the figure in 1883 to a famous French mineralogist, Augustin Damour.”
“Typically occurring in Virginia are basalt and metabasalt of the Catoctin Formation, granite and granodiorite of the Virginia Blue Ridge Complex, and andesite, tuft, and greenstone of the Swift Run Formation.”
“One of the beads had been perforated and a small greenstone bead was found in the soil.”
“One of these more luxurious items would have been the Field Museum's own greenstone sculpture of Quetzalcoatl, or the "feather serpent," on display here.”
“Successive tecto-metamorphic events of Late Precambrian age are largely responsible for the granite-greenstone belts that form the bedrock beneath much of this ecoregion.”
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