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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Vermiculite \Ver*mic"u*lite\, n. [L. vermiculus, dim. of vermis worm.] (Min.) A group of minerals having, a micaceous structure. They are hydrous silicates, derived generally from the alteration of some kind of mica. So called because the scales, when heated, open out into wormlike forms. [1913 Webster] Vermiculose