isostasy

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From iso- +‎ Ancient Greek στάσις (stásis, a standing).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

isostasy (uncountable)

  1. (geology) The state of balance or pressure equilibrium thought to exist within the Earth's crust, whereby the upper lithosphere floats on denser magma beneath.
    • 2003, Bill Bryson, A Short History of Nearly Everything, BCA, p. 155:
      The process of vertical movement, known as isostasy, was a foundation of geological belief for generations, though no-one had any really good theories as to how or why it happened.
    • 2004, Richard Fortey, The Earth, Folio Society 2011, p. 173:
      A great thickness of comparatively light sedimentary rocks accumulating in a geosyncline would ultimately ‘rebound’ because of isostasy – like a depressed rubber duck bouncing back upwards in a bath.

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