• synonyms


noun Mineralogy.
  1. a native carbonate of zinc, ZnCO3, that is an important ore of the metal.
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Origin of smithsonite

1825–35; named after J. Smithson (who distinguished it from calamine); see -ite1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for smithsonite

Historical Examples

  • Smithsonite is a carbonate much resembling, and often found with, calamine.

    The A B C of Mining

    Charles A. Bramble

  • Zinc occurs in nature most commonly as sulphide (blende); it also occurs as carbonate (calamine) and silicate (smithsonite).

British Dictionary definitions for smithsonite


  1. a white mineral consisting of zinc carbonate in hexagonal crystalline form: occurs chiefly in dry limestone regions and is a source of zinc. Formula: ZnCO 3Also called (US): calamine
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Word Origin

C19: named after James Smithson
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