Definition of olivine in English:



  • An olive-green, gray-green, or brown mineral occurring widely in basalt, peridotite, and other basic igneous rocks. It is a silicate containing varying proportions of magnesium, iron, and other elements.

    • ‘Here, olivine (peridot when gemmy) grains or anhedral crystals weather out of basaltic lava.’
    • ‘The magmatic evolution is dominated by low-pressure crystal fractionation of olivine, Cr-spinel, plagioclase and clinopyroxene.’
    • ‘Gem-quality olivine (magnesium iron silicate), known as peridot, is an oily olive-green colour.’
    • ‘This flow consists of about 30 percent plagioclase, clinopyroxene, and olivine, as small phenocrysts.’
    • ‘Second, in a process known as differentiation, crystals of olivine, clinopyroxene, and plagioclase began to crystallize from the magma, and being more dense than the magma, they settled to the bottom of the chamber.’
    • ‘The crustal differentiation processes were dominated by fractionation of olivine, chrome spinel, plagioclase and clinopyroxene, leading to evolved compositions.’
    • ‘Other associated minerals include olivine (commonly altered to serpentine), phlogopite, enstatite, and many other trace accessory minerals.’
    • ‘The Herbeira websterites contain diopside, enstatite, and pargasite with olivine, garnet, spinel, magnetite and ilmenite as minor phases.’
    • ‘Basalt is a fine-grained igneous rock that is primarily composed of the iron- and magnesium-rich minerals pyroxene and olivine and calcium-rich plagioclase feldspar.’
    • ‘All basalt chemical compositions can be plotted in the basalt tetrahedron, which has normative quartz, olivine, nepheline and augite at the apices.’
    • ‘Major mineral phases include plagioclase and pyroxene, with small amounts of opaque minerals, olivine, apatite, and sometimes biotite.’
    • ‘Observations by Spirit show the rock contains significant amounts of the minerals olivine, pyroxene and magnetite, all of which are common in some types of volcanic rock.’
    • ‘The volcanics were described by Aghabawa as alkaline basalts, hawaiites and mugearites with plagioclase, olivine and augite as the essential constituents.’
    • ‘Serpentine is a secondary mineral, a magnesian silicate, formed from minerals such as olivine and orthopyroxene.’
    • ‘Fractionation of ferromagnesian phases such as olivine, pyroxene and magnetite must have taken place during magma emplacement, as is suggested by the low Co abundance.’
    • ‘They contain olivine, clinopyroxene, plagioclase, analcite, ulvospinel and apatite + / - biotite + / - calcite.’
    • ‘Thus the order of phenocryst appearance in Kilauea lavas is olivine, plagioclase, augite whereas in Mauna Loa lavas it is olivine, augite, plagioclase.’
    • ‘They are basaltic flows rich in zeolites and phenocrysts (plagioclase, olivine and pyroxene), and intercalated with strombolian and phreatomagmatic deposits.’
    • ‘The most common phenocryst silicate phases are olivine, plagioclase and augite, typically, although not always, appearing in that order.’
    • ‘They typically comprise early olivine and plagioclase, ophitically enclosed by augite, with opaque oxides and apatite.’


Late 18th century: from Latin oliva (see olive) + -ine.