Share this entry

helictite Line breaks: he¦lic|tite
Pronunciation: /hɛˈlɪktʌɪt/

Definition of helictite in English:


A distorted form of stalactite, typically resembling a twig.
Example sentences
  • This has all the usual features one might expect in a cave - hundreds of stalagmites, stalactites and even helictites (strangely twisted stalactites).
  • At Lehman Caves, sign up early for one of the guided tours through an otherworldly half mile of stalactites, stalagmites, and twisting, straw-shaped helictites.
  • Near the end, a moderate crawl led to another cluster of crystals and helictites, though only a few of the group bothered with the crawl.


Late 19th century: from Greek heliktos 'twisted', on the pattern of stalactite.

Definition of helictite in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day haughty
Pronunciation: ˈhɔːti
arrogantly superior and disdainful