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[shist] /ʃɪst/
any of a class of crystalline metamorphic rocks whose constituent mineral grains have a more or less parallel or foliated arrangement.
Origin of schist
1775-85; < New Latin schistus, Latin (lapis) schistos < Greek schistós divided, curdled, divisible, derivative of schízein to split, with -tos adj. suffix Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for schist
Historical Examples
  • Here and there are mixtures of schist, gneiss, and porphyry.

  • General view of junction of granite and schist of the Valorsine.

  • The hills which bound the valley of the creek are basalt, sandstone, and schist.

  • There the vein had failed, between the schist and the tertiary sandstone.

    The Underground City Jules Verne
  • I think that would be schist about as good as anything you could do.

    Remarks Bill Nye
  • Why should the schist pendant of the Tappock chamber be all right, if the claystone pendant of Dunbuie be all wrong?

    The Clyde Mystery Andrew Lang
  • From time to time Tundup Sonam reared up a slab of schist to show the way to Tsering, who was coming behind without a guide.

  • We found that there actually were three quadrangular walls constructed of slabs of schist, probably of very ancient date.

  • Sometimes quartz, schist, or marble is of this quality also, if much native or rudis silver adheres to it.

    De Re Metallica Georgius Agricola
  • This schist rock when rich in copper, as I have said elsewhere, exudes a substance of a nature similar to asbestos.

    De Re Metallica Georgius Agricola
British Dictionary definitions for schist


any metamorphic rock that can be split into thin layers because its micaceous minerals have become aligned in thin parallel bands
Derived Forms
schistose, adjective
schistosity (ʃɪˈstɒsɪtɪ) noun
Word Origin
C18: from French schiste, from Latin lapis schistos stone that may be split, from Greek skhizein to split
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
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Word Origin and History for schist

type of layered metamorphic rock, 1795 (earlier schistus, c.1600), from French schiste (16c.), from Latin schistos lapis "stone that splits easily" (Pliny), from Greek skhistos "divided, separated," from skhizein "to split" (see shed (v.)). The rock splits easily in layers. Liddell and Scott says Greek skhistos lithos was "probably talc."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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schist in Science
A highly foliated, medium-grained metamorphic rock that splits easily into flakes or slabs along well-defined planes of mica. The mineral composition of schist is varied and is often reflected in the name given to the rock. For example, a schist that contains garnet is called a garnet schist. A schist containing chlorite is called a chlorite schist.

schistose adjective (shĭs'tōs')
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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