stro·​mat·​o·​lite | \ strō-ˈma-tə-ˌlīt How to pronounce stromatolite (audio) \

Definition of stromatolite

: a laminated usually mounded sedimentary fossil formed from layers of cyanobacteria, calcium carbonate, and trapped sediment

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Other Words from stromatolite

stromatolitic \ strō-​ˌma-​tə-​ˈli-​tik How to pronounce stromatolitic (audio) \ adjective

Examples of stromatolite in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Miller said this is a good place to see a sample of a stromatolite, a layered limestone structure made of sediment and fossilized cyanobacteria that lived in shallow oceans. Shaena Montanari, The Arizona Republic, "Arizona is full of fossils. Here's where to look for ancient sea creatures, petrified wood," 14 Aug. 2020 Compared with Curiosity, Perseverance boasts several upgraded instruments, including an advanced camera that could help researchers spot a stromatolite, a kind of rock formed only by microbes. Eva Botkin-kowacki, The Christian Science Monitor, "With Perseverance, NASA launches new stage in Mars exploration," 30 July 2020 Consider the case of extremely old stromatolites, layered underwater mounds created by cyanobacteria. Riley Black, Smithsonian Magazine, "Why It’s So Difficult to Find Earth’s Earliest Life," 30 Mar. 2020 Researchers have found stromatolites, microbial mats, chemical signatures indicative of life and more. Riley Black, Smithsonian Magazine, "Why It’s So Difficult to Find Earth’s Earliest Life," 30 Mar. 2020 The scientists from the University of New South Wales discovered 3.5 billion-year-old stromatolites, ancient sedimentary rocks, that were generally believed to contain the earliest signs of life, a theory that has now been proven. Fox News, "Scientists find the 'smoking gun,' signs of life from 3.5B years ago," 26 Sep. 2019 People standing and walking on stromatolites, ancient life forms of great scientific significance. Lauren Sloss, New York Times, "Is This the Next Tulum?," 24 Dec. 2019 Elsewhere on Earth, stromatolites provide proof of bacterial communities as old as 3.5 billion years. Bridget Alex, Discover Magazine, "Are the Oldest Fossils Real - Or Just Rocks?," 7 May 2019 In an ideal world, the outline of an ancient stromatolite would pop out in vivid contrast to a background of rock. Quanta Magazine, "World’s Oldest Fossils Now Appear to Be Squished Rocks," 22 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'stromatolite.' 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 stromatolite

1930, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for stromatolite

Latin stromat-, stroma bed covering + English -o- + -lite

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Time Traveler for stromatolite

Time Traveler

The first known use of stromatolite was in 1930

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Statistics for stromatolite

Last Updated

19 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Stromatolite.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Sep. 2020.

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