Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A fossilized material in shale and other sedimentary rock that yields oil upon heating.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. any organic matter present in a sedimentary rock that is insoluble in organic solvents; the precursor of oil and natural gas

Etymologies

Greek kēros, wax + -gen.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

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