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We report measurements of the intrinsic birefringence in CaF 2 and BaF 2 for wavelengths in the range 365 nm to 156 nm, and ab initio optical response calculations in these materials and Si, Ge, GaAs, and GaP. Calculations typically agree within 40%. For ͗110͘ propagation, where the effect is largest, our measurements for CaF 2 ͓BaF 2 ͔ give n ͗1 10͘ Ϫn ͗001͘ ϭ(Ϫ11.8Ϯ0.4)ϫ10 Ϫ7 ͓(ϩ34Ϯ3)ϫ10 Ϫ7 ͔ for ϭ156.10 nm. The magnitudes of these values have serious consequences for the use of crystallinedoi:10.1103/physrevb.64.241102 fatcat:avgszg7srrgxxajx3nrdwqxmjm