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contour line

a line joining points of equal elevation on a surface.
the representation of such a line on a map.
Mathematics. a line parallel to a trace.
Compare trace1 (def 11).
Also called contour, level curve, level line.
Origin of contour line
1835-45 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for contour line
  • Your land may be steep or irregular enough that you have more than one key contour line.
  • Trees along this line are felled on the upstream side of the contour line as much as possible.
  • Any point on a contour line is the same elevation as all the other points on the same line.
  • Think of a contour line as an imaginary line on the ground that takes any path necessary to maintain constant elevation.
  • Point out that a contour line joins points of equal elevation.
British Dictionary definitions for contour line

contour line

a line on a map or chart joining points of equal height or depth Often shortened to contour
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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contour line in Science
contour line

A line on a map joining points of equal elevation above a given level, usually mean sea level. ◇ The change in elevation between one contour line and the next is the contour interval.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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