One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A niobium-containing mineral found chiefly in nepheline-syenite and pegmatitic rocks, and occurring as brown or yellowish octahedral crystals which may turn green (or other colours) when strongly heated. Also: any of a group of oxide minerals sharing the cubic (isometric) crystal structure of this mineral and containing niobium, tantalum, or titanium. Frequently attributive, especially in "pyrochlore group".
Mid 19th century; earliest use found in American Journal of Science. From German Pyrochlor from pyro- + ancient Greek χλωρός greenish-yellow.
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