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soapstone

[ sohp-stohn ]
/ ˈsoʊpˌstoʊn /
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noun

a massive variety of talc with a soapy or greasy feel, used for hearths, washtubs, tabletops, carved ornaments, etc.

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Also called steatite.

Origin of soapstone

First recorded in 1675–85; soap + stone
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for soapstone

British Dictionary definitions for soapstone

soapstone
/ (ˈsəʊpˌstəʊn) /

noun

a massive compact soft variety of talc, used for making tabletops, hearths, ornaments, etcAlso called: steatite

Word Origin for soapstone

C17: so called because it has a greasy feel and was sometimes used as 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

Scientific definitions for soapstone

soapstone
[ sōpstōn′ ]

A soft metamorphic rock composed mostly of the mineral talc, but also including chlorite, pyroxene, and amphibole. It has a schistose texture and is greasy to the touch. Soapstone forms through the alteration of ferromagnesian silicate minerals during metamorphism.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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