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ventifact

[ven-tuh-fakt] /ˈvɛn təˌfækt/
noun, Geology
1.
a pebble or cobble that has been faceted, grooved, and polished by the erosive action of wind-driven sand.
Origin
1910-1915
1910-15; < Latin venti- (combining form of ventus wind1) + factum something made (see fact); perhaps modeled on artifact
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for ventifact

ventifact

/ˈvɛntɪˌfækt/
noun
1.
(geology) a pebble that has been shaped by wind-blown sand
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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ventifact in Science
ventifact
  (věn'tə-fākt')   
A rock or pebble that has been shaped, polished, or faceted by wind-driven sand.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for ventifact

stone that has received one or more highly polished, flattened facets as a result of erosion by windblown sand. The facets are cut in sequence and correlate with the dominant wind direction. As one surface is cut, the stone may become out of balance and may turn to expose another surface to the wind. A ventifact that has been eroded to three curved facets is called a dreikanter. Ventifacts are produced under arid conditions and are generally formed from hard, fine-grained rocks such as obsidian, chert, or quartzite.

Learn more about ventifact with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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