One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A very fine-grained sediment or sedimentary rock composed of clay or mud particles.
- ‘Foliations vary from grain-shape fabrics in quartzites and psammites, to a dominant crenulation cleavage in pelites, with intermediate rocks showing folded cleavage within a bed, and sometimes two cross-cutting cleavages.’
- ‘In most successions of metamorphic rocks, those with reactive lithologies, such as mature pelites, make up only a small proportion of the rock mass.’
- ‘There is no evidence for the superimposition of two entirely separate high-grade metamorphic regimes either in the calc-silicate rocks or in the associated pelites.’
- ‘A variety of sedimentary lithologies have been metamorphosed including pelites, psammites, quartzites and carbonates.’
- ‘The latter sediments are covered by pelites and sandstones carrying marine invertebrate fossils and deltaic facies with a Glossopteris flora, which indicates an Early Permian age.’
Late 19th century: from Greek pēlos ‘clay, mud’ + -ite.
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