[ ol-uh-veen, ol-uh-veen ]
/ ˈɒl əˌvin, ˌɒl əˈvin /
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Mineralogy. any of a group of magnesium iron silicates, (Mg,Fe)2SiO4, occurring in olive-green to gray-green masses as an important constituent of basic igneous rocks.



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Also called chrysolite.

Origin of olivine

1785–95; <German Olivin, equivalent to Oliveolive + -in-ine2
ol·i·vin·ic [ol-uh-vin-ik], /ˌɒl əˈvɪn ɪk/, ol·i·vin·it·ic [ol-uh-vi-nit-ik], /ˌɒl ə vɪˈnɪt ɪk/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for olivine

/ (ˈɒlɪˌviːn, ˌɒlɪˈviːn) /


an olive-green mineral of the olivine group, found in igneous and metamorphic rocks. The clear-green variety (peridot) is used as a gemstone. Composition: magnesium iron silicate. Formula: (MgFe) 2 SiO 4 . Crystal structure: orthorhombicAlso called: chrysolite
any mineral in the group having the general formula (Mg,Fe,Mn,Ca) 2 SiO 4
C18: from German, named after its colour
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

Scientific definitions for olivine

[ ŏlə-vēn′ ]

An olive-green to brownish-green orthorhombic mineral. Olivine is a common mineral in the igneous rocks, such as basalt and gabbro, that make up most of the Earth's crust beneath the oceans. Chemical formula: (Mg,Fe)2SiO4. ♦ Olivine in which the mafic component consists entirely of magnesium is called forsterite. Chemical formula: Mg2SiO4.♦ Olivine in which the mafic component consists entirely of iron is called fayalite. Chemical formula: Fe2SiO4.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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