the measurement of the depths of oceans, seas, or other large bodies of water.
the data derived from such measurement, especially as compiled in a topographic map.

1860–65; bathy- + -metry

bathymeter, noun
bathymetric [bath-uh-me-trik] , bathymetrical, adjective
bathymetrically, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To bathymetry
World English Dictionary
bathymetry (bəˈθɪmɪtrɪ)
measurement of the depth of an ocean or other large body of water

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Science Dictionary
bathymetry   (bə-thĭm'ĭ-trē)  Pronunciation Key 
The measurement of the depth of bodies of water, particularly of oceans and seas.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Britannica


measurement of ocean depth. The earliest technique involved lowering a heavy rope or cable of known length over the side of a ship, then measuring the amount needed to reach the bottom. Tedious and frequently inaccurate, this method yielded the depth at only a single point rather than a continuous measurement; inaccuracies arose because the rope did not necessarily travel straight to the bottom but instead might be deflected by subsurface currents or movements of the vessel.

Learn more about bathymetry with a free trial on

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Ocean bathymetry with depth curves and soundings, peak elevations, and handcrafted shaded relief provide topographical detail.
Bathymetry shows underwater terrain by indicating depth below sea level.
When installed in an airplane and pointed downward, lidar systems can be used to measure topography and nearshore bathymetry.
Simple interpolation techniques produce grossly inaccurate bathymetry models.
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature