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  1. a clay mineral, hydrous magnesium aluminum silicate, belonging to the montmorillonite group: found as a soft filling in rock cavities.
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Origin of saponite

1840–50; < Swedish saponit < Latin sāpōn- (stem of sāpō) soap + Swedish -it -ite1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for saponite


  1. a clay mineral consisting of hydrated magnesium aluminium silicate and occurring in metamorphic rocks such as serpentine
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Word Origin

C19: from Swedish saponit (a rendering of German Seifenstein soapstone), from Latin sāpō soap
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012