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[ver-mik-yuh-lahyt] /vərˈmɪk yəˌlaɪt/
any of a group of platy minerals, hydrous silicates of aluminum, magnesium, and iron, that expand markedly on being heated: used in the expanded state for heat insulation and as a plant growth medium.
Origin of vermiculite
1815-25, Americanism; vermicul(ar) + -ite1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for vermiculite
  • vermiculite was loaded here and taken to the exfoliation site.
  • vermiculite is a non-fibrous, platy, weathered mica mineral type used in many commercial and consumer applications.
  • vermiculite was used as insulation in houses as well as many other products.
  • vermiculite is also naturally occurring in this area.
  • Originally, the vermiculite was dumped on the floor of the plant.
  • It was one of the highest volume vermiculite processors in the nation.
British Dictionary definitions for vermiculite


any of a group of micaceous minerals consisting mainly of hydrated silicate of magnesium, aluminium, and iron: on heating they expand and exfoliate and in this form are used in heat and sound insulation, fireproofing, and as a bedding medium for young plants
Word Origin
C19: from vermicul(ar) + -ite1
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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Word Origin and History for vermiculite

1814, from Latin vermiculari (from vermiculus, diminutive of vermis; see worm) + -ite.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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