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 hotel commissioned Kaja Dahl to reenvision a stone drinking fountain that once stood in the wellness area and to fashion vases in granite-like porphyry for the guest suites. James Stewart, Robb Report, 23 Apr. 2022 By the 1590s, artists were looking at slate, marble, lapis lazuli, agate, amethyst, alabaster, obsidian, onyx, jasper, limestone and porphyry to envision a new kind of painting. Judith H. Dobrzynski, WSJ, 12 Mar. 2022 Western South Dakota has some of the finest hunks of sandstone, mica schist, granite, and phonolite porphyry in the American West. The Editors, Outside Online, 18 Aug. 2020 The collection includes numerous examples of quartz, granite, porphyry and other kinds of minerals commonly found around New England. Reed Gochberg, Smithsonian Magazine, 19 Nov. 2021 The walls were covered with ones, jasper, porphyry, and a dozen different marbles and, set in this crazy quilt, were carved, crystal medallions. Lucy Yeomans, House Beautiful, 10 June 2021 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, 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, 15 Aug. 2018 See More

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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porphyry copper

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Last Updated

3 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Porphyry.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/porphyry. Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on porphyry

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about porphyry


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