Summary: A quantitative X-ray diffraction method has been successfully applied to the determination of analcime in pumice rock samples. A calibration line was constructed from spiked pumice standards (range: 0 to 42%) and the mean relative error of the standards on the calibration line was < 0·6%. The major-element compositions of the samples and standards were available, and this allowed the total mass absorption coefficients to be calculated. The latter were then used to correct the sample and standard intensities for absorption effects resulting from compositional variations. When compositional data already exist, the calculation of the total absorption coefficient provides a rapid and accurate alternative to direct measurement, or to the use of an internal standard.