Definition of obsidian in English:


Line breaks: ob|sid¦ian
Pronunciation: /əbˈsɪdɪən


[mass noun]
  • A hard, dark, glass-like volcanic rock formed by the rapid solidification of lava without crystallization.
    More example sentences
    • Hard stones such as obsidian and rock crystal were added to the repertoire of the stone-vase maker.
    • The earliest mirrors were of obsidian, a black volcanic rock that could be carved and polished.
    • The presence of basalt and obsidian is a sign of volcanic activity and the instability of the earth's crust in this area.


mid 17th century: from Latin obsidianus, error for obsianus, from Obsius, the name (in Pliny) of the discoverer of a similar stone.

More definitions of obsidian

Definition of obsidian in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day skosh
Pronunciation: skəʊʃ
a small amount; a little