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glass sponge

any of a class (Hexactinellida, also called Hyalospongiae, or Triaxonia) of sponges characterized by a skeleton that consists of silica spicules (needlelike structures) often united into a delicate geometric network-e.g., that of Venus's flower basket (q.v.). Glass sponges occur mainly on muddy sea bottoms at great depths.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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