tek·​tite ˈtek-ˌtīt How to pronounce tektite (audio)
: a glassy body of probably meteoritic origin and of rounded but indefinite shape
tektitic adjective

Examples of tektite in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The first clues leading to the impact site came from small, pebble-like glassy objects called tektites. Michelle Lim, CNN, 9 Jan. 2020 Scientists have largely been able to determine the source crater for tektites, with the exception of one -- the Australasian field. Michelle Lim, CNN, 9 Jan. 2020 The composition of those beads, or tektites, further suggests that they were formed when a massive asteroid slammed into the Earth with the force of 10 billion Hiroshimas and ended the Cretaceous period. David Von Drehle, Twin Cities, 22 July 2019 In many K-Pg sites, the tektites formed a discrete layer—but not at Tanis. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, 31 Mar. 2019 These tektites formed in the Earth atmosphere in the aftermath of the asteroid or comet smashing into the Earth. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, 1 Apr. 2019 Tree resin at the site managed to catch some tektites before becoming fossilized as amber. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, 31 Mar. 2019 The tektites would have been nearly falling from space, falling down to Earth at terminal velocities between 100 and 200 miles per hour, the scientists estimate. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, 1 Apr. 2019 They're not just buried, but buried with glass beads known as tektites. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, 1 Apr. 2019 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'tektite.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


International Scientific Vocabulary, from Greek tēktos molten, from tēkein to melt — more at thaw

First Known Use

1909, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of tektite was in 1909

Dictionary Entries Near tektite

Cite this Entry

“Tektite.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tektite. Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

More from Merriam-Webster on tektite

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!