sapropel

sapropel

[sap-ruh-pel]
noun
mud consisting chiefly of decomposed organic matter formed at the bottom of a stagnant sea or lake.

Origin:
1905–10; sapro- + -pel < Greek pēlós mud

sapropelic, adjective
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
sapropel (ˈsæprəˌpɛl)
 
n
an unconsolidated sludge consisting of the decomposed remains of aquatic organisms, esp algae, that accumulates at the bottoms of lakes and oceans
 
[C20: from sapro- + -pel from Greek pēlos mud]
 
sapro'pelic
 
adj

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
sapropel   (sāp'rə-pěl')  Pronunciation Key 
An unconsolidated ooze consisting mainly of putrefied plant remains and found in anaerobic areas at the bottom of swamps, lakes, and shallow seas.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

sapropel

unconsolidated sedimentary deposit rich in bituminous substances. It is distinguished from peat in being rich in fatty and waxy substances and poor in cellulosic material. When consolidated into rock, sapropel becomes oil shale, bituminous shale, or boghead coal. The principal components are certain types of algae that are rich in fats and waxes. Minor constituents are mineral grains and decomposed fragments of spores, fungi, and bacteria. The organic materials accumulate in water under reducing conditions

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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