One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A mineral of the monoclinic crystal system that is a hydrated phosphate of zinc and iron (often partly replaced by manganese), Zn₂Fe(PO₄)₂.4H₂O, and occurs as colourless to bluish-green, glassy, tabular crystals.
1920s; earliest use found in Mineralogical Abstracts. From German Phosphophyllit from phospho- + ancient Greek ϕύλλον leaf + German -it, so called in allusion to the mineral's perfect cleavage.
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