sphal·​er·​ite ˈsfa-lə-ˌrīt How to pronounce sphalerite (audio)
: a mineral composed essentially of zinc sulfide that is the most important ore of zinc

called also zinc blende

Word History


German Sphalerit, from Greek sphaleros deceitful, from sphallein to cause to fall; from its often being mistaken for galena — more at spill entry 1

First Known Use

circa 1868, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of sphalerite was circa 1868

Dictionary Entries Near sphalerite

Cite this Entry

“Sphalerite.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sphalerite. Accessed 23 Apr. 2024.

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