Definition of agate in English:

agate

noun

mass noun
  • 1An ornamental stone consisting of a hard variety of chalcedony (quartz), typically banded in appearance.

    • ‘It is also important to consider that at that time there were masters of the technique of working with jasper, agate, and other industrial stones in Russia.’
    • ‘My necklaces are made mainly of semiprecious stones, such as agate, quartz, amber, rock crystal and jade.’
    • ‘Fanciful miniature fruits and leaves interpreted in carnelian, agate, onyx and rock crystal are skillfully fashioned into opulent bracelets and chains.’
    • ‘To achieve the reflective gleam of solid gold which is the aim of water gilding it needs to be burnished by rubbing the surface with a burnisher, usually a hard polished stone such as haematite or agate mounted in a wooden handle.’
    • ‘The depictions of birds and flowers were executed in precious materials including lapis lazuli, agate, Sicilian red and green jasper, chalcedony, amethyst and quartz as well as superb hard stones.’
    • ‘There are semi-precious stones like jasper and agate, inlaid on the top.’
    • ‘A well-known locality for agate or chalcedony nodules in rhyolite (thunder eggs) is near the Twin Mountains, northwest of Del Norte in Saguache County.’
    • ‘As with top-quality Brazilian agate, uncut Botswana agate is difficult to obtain because rough material is sold for the production of beads, jewelry, and souvenirs.’
    • ‘Silica precipitated from aqueous solution at low temperatures gives cryptocrystalline varieties such as opal, jasper, chalcedony, agate, carnelian, onyx, flint, and chert.’
    • ‘The raw materials of these tools were pottery, porcelain, copper, iron, lacquer, wood, bamboo, stone, jade, jadeite, agate and coral.’
    • ‘In fact, seventeen of the fifty-seven sites are specifically listed for agate, chalcedony, chert, jasper, or petrified wood.’
    • ‘Stones and metals fall under the rulership of planets, not signs, but through its association with Mercury, Virgo is often linked with agate, sardonyx and stones of diverse colours.’
    • ‘With a technique called Parchin Kari, inlaid gemstones of lapis lazuli, agate, and garnet were selected for their variations in tone, giving the resulting flowers an illusion of depth.’
    • ‘Many ideas have been proposed for the development of chalcedony and the banding in agate.’
    • ‘Attractive gemstone paintings, which use garnet, turquoise, yellow agate and red jasper, from Agra catch the attention of visitors.’
    • ‘Slowest-forming and most beautiful of all, huge crystals of amethyst, agate, chalcedony and rock crystal grow where condensed water has managed to seep into naturally insulated rock crevices.’
    • ‘I glanced at my agate stone and then back at the policeman.’
    • ‘Early cameos are carved from hardstones such as onyx, sardonyx, or agate, while later a number of less expensive substances were used that were also easier to carve.’
    • ‘For most large deposits of agate or silicified wood, silica was derived from the decomposition of volcanic rocks.’
    • ‘The set sounds very beautiful, with the board made from ebony that was probably imported from India, and playing pieces made from locally quarried agate and turquoise stone.’
    1. 1.1count noun A coloured toy marble resembling a banded gemstone.
      • ‘You have to be on your mettle to snag them agates (especially with some monster thug trying to put a lump on the back of your noggin).’
      • ‘Anyone could knock your shooter out of the ring and, guess what?---there goes your treasured Christmas agate.’
      • ‘I do remember we played for keepsies and I won a nice collection of clearies, cat-eyes (the purple/green combos were my favorites), a few highly prized speckled eggs, aggies (agates), alleys (alabaster/marble), steelies, and even a few boulders.’
      • ‘Grab some cat-eyes, agates and steelies, and enjoy this classic game!’
      • ‘Agates, the gold standard of marbles (called aggies), came in a rainbow of subtle colors with overlaying colored patterns that made them look like beautiful, semi-precious stones.’

Origin

Late 15th century: from French, via Latin from Greek akhatēs.

Pronunciation

agate

/ˈaɡət/