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[eks-kuh-vey-shuh n] /ˌɛks kəˈveɪ ʃən/
a hole or cavity made by excavating.
the act of excavating.
an area in which excavating has been done or is in progress, as an archaeological site.
1605-15; < Latin excavātiōn- (stem of excavātiō) a hollowing. See excavate, -ion
Related forms
excavational, adjective
nonexcavation, noun
reexcavation, noun
1. See hole. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for excavations
  • So of course there has been little done in this area to conduct scientific excavations.
  • The data on these prehistoric humans come from cave excavations in lowland wet zone.
  • Ruins and basic excavations dot the grounds, and the surrounding rainforests are rich in bird and animal life.
  • excavations of a series of sites in this region have recovered items left behind by what may have been that progenitor population.
  • Inscribed blocks have been stolen, and illegal excavations and construction have been reported at several sites.
  • Modern excavations show that the first part of the megalith to be constructed was the circular ditches.
  • The site has yielded a half-million ceramic vessels, and excavations continue to uncover more wonders.
  • excavations at the pyramid's base revealed an elaborate tomb with carved stone artifacts and remains of sacrificed animals.
  • The property is several hundred feet from where three or four previous excavations were made.
  • People have been saying for ages that angry spirits arise from such excavations.
Word Origin and History for excavations



1610s, "action of excavating," from Latin excavationem (nominative excavatio) "a hollowing out," noun of action from past participle stem of excavare (see excavate).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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excavations in Medicine

excavation ex·ca·va·tion (ěk'skə-vā'shən)

  1. A natural cavity, pouch, or recess.

  2. A cavity formed artificially or as the result of a pathological process.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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