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A highly to completely weathered rock which has been altered and decomposed by chemical processes but retains textural and structural features of the parent material.

A soft, earthy, typically clay-rich, thoroughly decomposed rock, formed in place by chemical weathering of igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic rocks. It often forms a layer or cover as much as 100 m thick, esp. in humid and tropical or subtropical climates; the color is commonly some shade of red or brown, but it may be white or gray. Saprolite is characterized by preservation of structures that were present in the unweathered rock.

Synonyms: saprolith, sathrolith

Compare with: geest, laterite

Ref: AGI

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Classification of SaproliteHide

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Jolyon & Katya RalphUnited Kingdom

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