obsidian (ŏbsĭd`ēən), a volcanic glassglass,
hard substance, usually brittle and transparent, composed chiefly of silicates and an alkali fused at high temperature. Composition and Properties of Glass
..... Click the link for more information. , homogeneous in texture and having a low water content, with a vitreous luster and a conchoidal fracture. The color is commonly black, but may be some shade of red or brown, and cut sections sometimes appear to be green. Like other volcanic glasses, obsidian is a lavalava
, molten rock that erupts on the earth's surface, either on land or under the ocean, by a volcano or through a fissure. It solidifies into igneous rock that is also called lava.
..... Click the link for more information. that has cooled too quickly for the contained minerals to crystallize. In chemical composition it is rich in silica and similar to granite. It is favored by primitive peoples for knives, arrowheads, spearheads, and other weapons and tools.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/
A natural volcanic glass, usually black with a bright luster, that is transparent in thin slabs. See also: Stone
Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture Copyright © 2012, 2002, 1998 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved
Obsidian (pop culture)
Introduced in All-Star Squadron #25 (1983) in a story scripted by Roy Thomas and penciled by Jerry Ordway, the living shadow Obsidian joins the list of heroes who have turned to the dark side. Unbeknownst to him, Todd Rice was the child of Alan Scott, the original Green Lantern. Raised in Milwaukee by abusive foster parent James Rice, the teenage Todd resolved to become a hero when he discovered both his “shadow powers” and his long-lost twin, Jennie-Lynn Hayden, with whom he can communicate telepathically. Together they became Jade and Obsidian, founding members of the hero group Infinity, Inc., which comprised those heroes who continued the legacy of the Justice Society of America. Todd can merge his body with his own shadow, becoming either a three-dimensional shadow form or a two-dimensional silhouette. As Obsidian, he possesses superstrength and supervitality, can float weightlessly, and delights in showing his enemies their own dark side. Obsidian's connection with the shadow realm (Shadowlands) and his experience of seeing the darkness within the human soul caused him to go gradually insane. After many of his teammates were killed and Infinity, Inc. disbanded, he waged a one-man war against his biological and adoptive fathers. Under the mentorship of Ian Karkull, an age-old Justice Society nemesis, Obsidian has fought numerous heroes, and also partnered with the princes of darkness Dark Lord Mordru and Eclipso. His family and friends remain hopeful that Obsidian will one day reject the evil that has consumed him.
The Supervillain Book: The Evil Side of Comics and Hollywood © 2006 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.
(Latin Obsidianus lapis, “Obsidius’ stone”; according to Pliny the Elder, the rock was discovered in Ethiopia by a certain Obsidius, or more accurately, Obsius), a homogeneous vitreous volcanic rock, usually dark-colored (black, reddish black), with a marked conchoidal fracture. The hardness on Mohs’ scale is 5, and the density, is 2,500–2,600 kg/m3. The rock contains about 0.5 percent water.
Obsidian polishes well. It is formed upon hardening of the viscous varieties of rhyolite lava or rhyodacite lava. Certain varieties of obsidian are used as decorative stones. In the Stone Age and Bronze Age, obsidian was used to make arrowheads, spearheads, knives, and scrapers. At present it is used mainly as an expanding filler for lightweight concretes. Obsidian is found in areas of volcanic activity—for example, in Transcaucasia and on Kamchatka in the USSR, and also in Italy and Mexico.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
A jet-black volcanic glass, usually of rhyolitic composition, formed by rapid cooling of viscous lava; generally forms the upper parts of lava flows. Also known as hyalopsite; Iceland agate; mountain mahogany.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
A natural volcanic glass, usually black, with a bright luster; has relatively low water content.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
a dark volcanic glass formed by very rapid solidification of lava
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005