a secondary mineral, hydrous ferrous phosphate, Fe 3 (PO 4 ) 2 ⋅8H 2 O, occurring in the form of pale blue crystals or powder.

1815–25; named after J. G. Vivian, 19th-century English mineralogist, who found it; see -ite1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To vivianite
Encyclopedia Britannica


phosphatephosphate mineral, hydrated iron phosphate [Fe3(PO4)28H2O], that occurs as colourless (when freshly exposed) or dark-blue (after long exposure), glassy crystals in the weathered zones of phosphate deposits and as concretions in clays (widespread). It also occurs in recent sediments, in lignite and peat, in forest soils, and as the colouring agent in odontolite (bone turquoise). Localities of occurrence include England, Germany, Bolivia, Japan, and Ukraine. It is abundant in New Jersey and Colorado. For detailed physical properties, see phosphate mineral (table)

Learn more about vivianite with a free trial on

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Vivianite is unusual in that, the mineral will turn blue as a result of partial oxidation.
These particles, composed of phosphate and iron, may be the mineral vivianite.
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature