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[krip-toh-kris-tl-in, -ahyn] /ˌkrɪp toʊˈkrɪs tl ɪn, -ˌaɪn/
adjective, Mineralogy
having a microscopic crystalline structure.
Origin of cryptocrystalline
1860-65; crypto- + crystalline Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for cryptocrystalline
  • They are microcrystalline or cryptocrystalline varieties which show different textures depending on the fibrous habit.
  • Chalcedony is a catch all term that includes many well known varieties of cryptocrystalline quartz gemstones.
  • As opal ages geologically, it dewaters and ultimately devitrifies to quartz as chalcedony, a cryptocrystalline variety of quartz.
  • Consists of light- to medium-gray and dark-gray, cryptocrystalline to coarsely crystalline, thin- to medium-bedded limestone.
  • The andesitic chips usually exhibit a distinct felted texture but they may be porphyritic or even cryptocrystalline.
  • Raw materials noted were quartzite, basalt, cryptocrystalline silicate and slate.
  • Some cinnabar is colloidally dispersed through cryptocrystalline quartz and disseminated through altered rocks.
  • Chert and novaculite are both composed of chalcedony, a cryptocrystalline quartz, and microcrystalline quartz.
  • Chert is a dense, cryptocrystalline, amorphous variety of quartz which displays conchoidal fracture.
  • Chalcedony is actually cryptocrystalline quartz having a fibrous microscopic texture.
British Dictionary definitions for cryptocrystalline


(of rocks) composed of crystals that can be distinguished individually only by the use of a polarizing microscope
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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cryptocrystalline in Science
  (krĭp'tō-krĭs'tə-lĭn, -līn')   
Having a microscopic crystalline structure, as the mineral chalcedony does.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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