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1. The gross physical character of a rock or rock formation.
2. The microscopic study, description, and classification of rock.

lith′o·log′ic (lĭth′ə-lŏj′ĭk), lith′o·log′i·cal adj.
lith′o·log′i·cal·ly adv.
li·thol′o·gist n.


1. (Geological Science) the physical characteristics of a rock, including colour, composition, and texture
2. (Geological Science) the study of rocks
lithologic, ˌlithoˈlogical adj
ˌlithoˈlogically adv
liˈthologist n


(lɪˈθɒl ə dʒi)

a. (loosely) petrology.
b. the physical characteristics of a rock or stratigraphic unit.
lith`o•log′ic (-əˈlɒdʒ ɪk) lith`o•log′i•cal, adj.
lith`o•log′i•cal•ly, adv.


the branch of geology that studies the mineral composition and structure of rocks, usu. macroscopically. Cf. petrography.lithologic, lithological, adj.
See also: Geology


The study of rocks, especially their composition and texture.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.lithology - the branch of geology that studies rocks: their origin and formation and mineral composition and classification
geomorphology, morphology - the branch of geology that studies the characteristics and configuration and evolution of rocks and land forms
References in periodicals archive ?
This work includes satellite image interpretation, lineament analysis, detailed lithological and structural mapping, and soil geochemical sampling.
The Company observed that exploration drilling intersected gold-bearing quartz veins and sulphides through four zones, similar to the lithological sequence in the historic McFinley Deposit.
Towards the northwest (Drygant 2000; Radkovets 2015), the thickness of the Silurian sequence decreases and the lithological composition changes from clayey and carbonate-clayey to carbonate and carbonate-sulphate rocks.
Similarly airborne gamma ray spectrometric survey is used to evaluate variations in the mineral composition, properties of soils and their parent geological material so as to map lateral lithological changes.
4a) The correlation shows a good understanding between surface seismic recorded data and 1D forward modeling and give us clue of lithological interpretation (Fig.
An exhibition brochure explained Barrada's discovery of a hand-painted lithological chart in a museum of natural history in Morocco, which inspired her attempts to translate scientific information into color codes and geographical patterns.
Sites were chosen to encompass the major soil lithological groups mentioned above, primarily metamorphic rock (19% of sites), granite (18%), shale (24%) and basalt (22%), with the rest mostly sandstone-quartz (9%) and rhyolite, alluvial and dolcritc (9%).
The Maykop series, by lithological composition, consists of dark-gray and chocolate-laminated shaly clays with numerous imprints of fish, scales of melletas and residues of stems of fossilised Cedroxylon trees.
This valley is surrounded by several lithological units: (i) to the north, the Hercynian basement of Sierra Morena comprising a wide variety of Palaeozoic rocks such as granitic plutonic rocks and metamorphic rocks (slates, schists and hornfels), (ii) to the south, the Subbetic domain of the External Zone of the Betic Cordillera (Sierra Magina), which constitutes a far more abrupt southern margin comprising mainly Mesozoic limestones, and (iii) to the east, the Prebetic domain of the External Zone of the Betic Cordillera (Sierra de Cazorla), incised by the upper stream of the Guadalquivir River and composed of Mesozoic carbonates, predominantly dolostones in the study area.
Figure 16 shows that the 37 m point is a lithological interface changing from gritstone to limestone; the 76 m point is lithological interface changing from sandy mudstone to gritstone.
A total of more than 140 samples were collected from the three sections at suitable intervals covering all lithological variations of Lockhart Limestone.
In the study area lithological units is outcrops the second to fourth periods, which from old to new are as follows: phyllite, ouartzite, paragneiss, marble, shell, sandstone with tufa, volcanic rocks, crystalline limestone locally with fosolina, metamorphic volcanic and tufa, cherty limestone, phyllite, metamorphic quartzarenite, micaschist, metadolomite, amphibolite, limestone, shale and sandstone, schist hornfels, orthogneiss, granodiorite, oput rock, shale and phyllite sandstone, granite, granodiorite, diorite, dolomitic lime, radiolarit breccia, rodist lime, orbitoline, radiolarat, black and blue marl with limestone, alluvium.