• synonyms


[trav-er-teen, -tin]
  1. a form of limestone deposited by springs, especially hot springs, used in Italy for building.
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Also trav·er·tin [trav-er-tin] /ˈtræv ər tɪn/.

Origin of travertine

1545–55; < Italian travertino, equivalent to tra- across (< Latin trāns- trans-) + (ti)vertino < Latin Tīburtīnus, equivalent to Tīburt- (stem of Tīburs) the territory of Tibur (see Tivoli) + -īnus -ine1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for travertine

Historical Examples

  • They are built of blocks of red tufa, with facing of travertine.

    Pagan and Christian Rome

    Rodolfo Lanciani

  • The ground floor corridor is wainscoted in rosy-tan Montana travertine.

  • The tufa and travertine wall is erected on the travertine pavement of the Comitium.

    Rambles in Rome

    S. Russell Forbes

  • This has been heightened by a travertine wall of the republican period.

    Rambles in Rome

    S. Russell Forbes

  • The walls of the cella were built of travertine faced with marble.

    Old Rome

    Robert Burn

British Dictionary definitions for travertine



  1. a porous rock consisting of calcium carbonate, used for buildingAlso called: calc-sinter
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Word Origin

C18: from Italian travertino (influenced by tra- trans-), from Latin lapis Tīburtīnus Tiburtine stone, from Tīburs the district around Tibur (now Tivoli)
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

Word Origin and History for travertine


1797, from Italian travertino "a kind of building stone," from Latin tiburtinus, from Tiburs, adjective from Tibur (modern Tivoli), region in Latium.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

travertine in Science


[trăvər-tēn′, -tĭn]
  1. A white, tan, or cream-colored form of limestone, often having a fibrous or concentric appearance. Travertine is formed through the rapid precipitation of calcium carbonate, especially at the mouth of a hot spring or in limestone caves, where it forms stalactites and stalagmites. It is similar to but harder than tufa.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.