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

  • n. A green, gray, or red metamorphic rock, similar to slate but often having a wavy surface and a distinctive micaceous luster.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. a type of metamorphic rock formed from clay-rich sediments called pelites

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A mineral related to ottrelite.
  • n. Clay slate; argillaceous schist.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. One of the names given to clay-slate or argillaceous schist.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • We found a dead cormorant shattered on the phyllite boulders.

    "If I'm to be your camera, then who will be your face?"

  • We climbed over the craggy outcrops of Cambro-Ordovician age Fort Burnside Formation and Jamestown Formation, crazily tilted beds of phyllite and slate and siltstone and stark white veins of calcite.

    "Into a light that lingers."

  • It was too bitterly cold to be on the western side of the island, but there was shelter from the wind below the cliffs of slate and phyllite on the eastern side.

    "You will choke, choke on the air you try to breathe..."

  • That means the rocks are quite a bit older than the Cambrian and Ordovician slate and phyllite at Beavertail, two miles to the southwest.

    Of Books and the Sea

  • We climbed down onto the snow-dappled rocks, and sat watching the sea sloshing against the tilted, contorted beds of slate and phyllite.

    "If looks could kill, they probably will..."

  • I found a comfortable spot (about .44 miles northeast of the lighthouse) among the tilted beds of Cambrian-aged phyllite and slate, and I just lay there in the sun, listening to the sea and watching the birds.

    "While my feet are the trunks and my head is the canopy, high..."

  • Here, rocks of the Cambro-Ordovician Conanicut Group, specifically interstratified beds of the Fort Burnside Formation and the older Jamestown Formation form great flat tables of phyllite and siltstone, metamorphosed to varying degrees.

    "Don't let the Earth in me subside..."

  • Precambrian units are widespread and consist of quartzite, schist, phyllite, conglomerate, dolomite, siltstone and sandstone.

    Tasmanian Wilderness, Australia

  • The more resistant sequences, such as quartzite, form most of the prominent ranges in the area, while less resistant schist, dolomite and phyllite underline many of the valleys and plains.

    Tasmanian Wilderness, Australia

  • The geology is also distinctive, consisting of mostly Silurian to Devonian age phyllite, quartzite, slate, metasiltstone, and metaconglomerate, in contrast to the high-grade metamorphic and intrusive igneous rocks of 45a and 45b.

    Ecoregions of Alabama and Georgia (EPA)


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