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 (zĕn′ə-lĭth′, zē′nə-)
A rock fragment foreign to the igneous mass in which it occurs.


(Geological Science) a fragment of rock differing in origin, composition, structure, etc, from the igneous rock enclosing it
ˌxenoˈlithic adj


(ˈzɛn l ɪθ, ˈzin-)

a rock fragment foreign to the igneous rock in which it is embedded.
xen`o•lith′ic, adj.


a fragment of rock embedded in another kind of rock.
See also: Geology
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.xenolith - (geology) a piece of rock of different origin from the igneous rock in which it is embeddedxenolith - (geology) a piece of rock of different origin from the igneous rock in which it is embedded
geology - a science that deals with the history of the earth as recorded in rocks
rock, stone - a lump or mass of hard consolidated mineral matter; "he threw a rock at me"
References in periodicals archive ?
Each sample was slabbed to approximately one centimeter in thickness, and any visible weathering rind and/or xenolith material was trimmed away.
Located on the eastern edge of the Front Range of the Southern Rocky Mountains, the Kelsey Lake kimberlites were discovered in 1986-87 following a period of relatively intense exploration activity in the area after an earlier accidental find of diamond in a peridotite xenolith by a CSU graduate.
Session of Interest: Mantle-Derived Intraplate Magmas, their Xenolith and Diamond Cargo: Processes, Timescales, and Geodynamic Implications
Crustal make-up of the northern Andes: evidence based on deep crustal xenolith suites, Mercaderes, SW Colombia.
Objectives of this study include: 1) determining mineral composition of olivine, clinopyroxene, and orthopyroxene in the xenoliths; 2) examining individual chemical zoning characteristics or orthopyroxene, clinopyroxene, and olivine; 3) comparing mineral chemistry and zoning differences between xenoliths from different eruption styles; and 4) use xenolith compositions to determine lithospheric mantle pressure and temperature.
Recent prospecting and stripping programs on the Cobalt Property have resulted in the mapping of a number of xenolith bearing hypabbysal dyke intrusions in the Pan-Anderson Lake area.
2006): A U-Pb study of zircons from a lower crustal granulite xenolith of the Spanish Central system: a record of Iberian lithospheric evolution from the Neoproterozoic to the Triassic.
1999, Study of anisotropy in an olivine xenolith using acoustic waves and neutron diffraction, Physics of the Solid Earth, Vol.
Corona-type aggregates that formed on xenolith margins may be analogous to pegmatoidal "strain shadows" reported in some granitoids, which formed through the flow of intercumulus melt into low-pressure areas generated by the rotation of xenoliths during late-magmatic deformation (Paterson and Miller 1998).