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Imbrication (sedimentary deposition): red lines highlight the edges of clasts and their orientation to the base (blue)


From French imbrication.


imbrication (countable and uncountable, plural imbrications)

  1. A set of tiles or shingles that overlap like the scales of a fish.
  2. (medicine) Overlapping of layers of tissue in wound closure or correctional surgery.
    • 2009, Joseph Niamtu, Face-lifts, Michael S. Kaminer, Kenneth A. Arndt, Jeffrey S. Dover, Thomas E. Rohrer, Christopher B. Xachary (editors), Atlas of Cosmetic Surgery, Elsevier (Saunders), 2nd Edition, page 528,
      SMAS flaps or SMASectomies are considered imbrications in this chapter. SMAS tightening is probably a more accurate description with 'open' SMAS techniques referring to imbrication and 'closed' SMAS techniques referring to plication.
  3. (geology) A sedimentary deposition in which small, flat stones are tiled in the same direction so that they overlap.
    • 1991, D. L. Southwick, G. B. Morey, Tectonic Imbrication and Foredeep Development in the Penokean Orogen, East-Central Minnesota — An Interpretation Based on Regional Geophysics and the Results of Test-Drilling, US Geological Society, Bulletin 1904 C, page C7,
      The Archean basement beyond and beneath the northwest flanks of the turbidite basins constitutes the cratonic foreland against which northwest-directed tectonic imbrication is thought to have occurred.
  4. (linguistics) A phenomenon occurring in many Bantu languages in which morphemes interweave in certain morphophonological conditions.
    • 2014, Sharon Inkelas, The Interplay of Morphology and Phonology, Oxford University Press, page 358,
      The Kiyaka perfective, applicative, and causative suffixes display an unusual type of infixation known in the Bantu literature as “imbrication” (see e.g. the discussion of imbrication in Tiene in chapters 4 and 6).

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