por·​phy·​ry | \ ˈpȯr-f(ə-)rē How to pronounce porphyry (audio) \
plural porphyries

Definition of porphyry

1 : a rock consisting of feldspar crystals embedded in a compact dark red or purple groundmass
2 : an igneous rock of porphyritic texture

Examples of porphyry in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The step leading to the chapel is a big block of red Egyptian porphyry with white spots carved from an ancient monolith that Chigi bought for a small fortune. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "The Immovable Raphael," 19 Sep. 2020 Verrocchio constructed monumental bronze sculptures, carved delicate marble and terra-cotta portrait busts, designed porphyry tombs and marble fountains, as well as painting exquisite panel paintings. Cammy Brothers, WSJ, "‘Leonardo: Discoveries From Verrocchio’s Studio’ Review: Searching for a Master’s Hand," 15 Aug. 2018

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

First Known Use of porphyry

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for porphyry

Middle English porphiri, from Medieval Latin porphyrium, alteration of Latin porphyrites, from Greek porphyritēs (lithos), literally, stone like Tyrian purple, from porphyra purple

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

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Cite this Entry

“Porphyry.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/porphyry. Accessed 20 Apr. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on porphyry

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about porphyry

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