- a black or dark-brown shale or siltstone rich in bitumens, from which shale oil is obtained by destructive distillation.
Origin of oil shale
First recorded in 1870–75
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for oil shale
Oil-shale is plentiful on the Congo River near Ponthierville and good indications of oil are recorded in other places.An African Adventure
Isaac F. Marcosson
- a fine-grained shale containing oil, which can be extracted by heating
- A fine-grained black or dark brown shale containing hydrocarbons in the form of kerogen. When heated, oil shale yields petroleum or natural gas.
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