crys·​tal·​line | \ ˈkri-stə-lən also -ˌlīn How to pronounce crystalline (audio) , -ˌlēn \

Definition of crystalline

1 : resembling crystal: such as
a : strikingly clear or sparkling crystalline air a crystalline lake
2 : made of crystal : composed of crystals
3 : constituting or relating to a crystal

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Other Words from crystalline

crystallinity \ ˌkri-​stə-​ˈli-​nə-​tē How to pronounce crystallinity (audio) \ noun

Examples of crystalline in a Sentence

we could see fish swimming beneath the crystalline ice of the frozen lake
Recent Examples on the Web The bullet’s impact thus converts boron carbide from a crystalline state where atoms are systematically ordered to a glass-like state where atoms are haphazardly arranged. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Scientists Improve Body Armor By Adding a Pinch of Silicon," 29 Jan. 2020 The design was a crystalline beauty, its glass walls covering wood honeycombs in which mementos of gunshot victims were displayed. Blair Kamin,, "Best in architecture in 2019: Notre Dame saved, Wright honored, Old Post Office revived," 11 Dec. 2019 The sun beams, the crystalline water sparkles, and a group of Goop staffers sit cross-legged in a circle, like schoolchildren poised for a read-aloud. Arielle Pardes, Wired, "Sure, The Goop Lab Is Absurd—but It Also Offers Hope," 24 Jan. 2020 Jervis Bay, a resort town between Sydney and Canberra on Australia’s southeastern coast, usually boasts beaches of soft white sand and seawater of crystalline clarity. Keith Bradsher, New York Times, "Australia’s Fires Test Its Winning Growth Formula," 13 Jan. 2020 Some fragments are lost into space, but the crystalline structure of the silicon carbide traps others, such as particular types of helium and neon. Charlie Wood, Popular Science, "Researchers trace galactic history in ancient grains of alien sand," 14 Jan. 2020 The key lies with perovskite, a crystalline structure first discovered in Russia in the mid-1800s. Nathanial Gronewold, Scientific American, "This Material Could Squeeze More Energy from Solar Panels," 13 Jan. 2020 The choruses and arias, meanwhile, rise to moments of sumptuous lyricism that complement the precise, crystalline tone-colours elsewhere. The Economist, "A new retelling of “The Snow Queen” is aimed squarely at adults," 31 Dec. 2019 The material, β-Bi2Pd, is a thin film of crystalline bismuth and palladium. Jim Daley, Scientific American, "Strange Superconductor Sends Electrons Both Ways," 21 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'crystalline.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of crystalline

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for crystalline

Middle English cristallin, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin crystallinus, borrowed from Greek krystállinos, from krýstallos "clear ice, crystal entry 1" + -inos -ine entry 1

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Time Traveler for crystalline

Time Traveler

The first known use of crystalline was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

15 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Crystalline.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for crystalline


How to pronounce crystalline (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of crystalline

: clear and shining like crystal
technical : made of or similar to crystal or crystals


crys·​tal·​line | \ ˈkri-stə-lən How to pronounce crystalline (audio) \

Kids Definition of crystalline

1 : made of crystal or composed of crystals


crys·​tal·​line | \ ˈkris-tə-lən also -ˌlīn, -ˌlēn \

Medical Definition of crystalline

1 : composed of or resembling crystals
2a : formed by crystallization : having regular arrangement of the atoms in a space lattice — see amorphous sense 2
b : having the internal structure though not necessarily the external form of a crystal granite is only crystalline, while quartz crystal is perfectly crystallized

Other Words from crystalline

crystallinity \ ˌkris-​tə-​ˈlin-​ət-​ē How to pronounce crystallinity (audio) \ noun, plural crystallinities

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