The component bacteria of a three-membered mixed culture able to ferment glycolate to acetate, propionate and CO2 were isolated in pure culture. All three strains were strict anaerobes that, on the basis of comparative 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis, belonged to the order Clostridiales in the phylum Firmicutes (low G+C gram-positive bacteria). Two of the strains were not involved in glycolate metabolism. The third, the glycolate-fermenting strain 19gly4 (DSM 11261), was related to members of the family Lachnospiraceae. The cells of strain 19gly4 were oval- to lemon-shaped, 0.85 µm long and 0.65 µm in diameter, occurring singly, in pairs, or in chains of up to 30 cells. Strain 19gly4 fermented glycolate or fumarate to acetate, succinate, and CO2. Hydrogen was not formed, and strain 19gly4 was able to grow on glycolate in pure culture without any syntrophic hydrogen transfer and without the use of an external electron acceptor. There was no evidence for homoacetogenic metabolism. This bacterium therefore differs in metabolism from previously reported glycolate-utilising anaerobes.