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[sed-uh-men-tuh-ree] /ˌsɛd əˈmɛn tə ri/
of, relating to, or of the nature of sediment.
Geology. formed by the deposition of sediment, as certain rocks.
Also, sedimental.
Origin of sedimentary
1820-30; sediment + -ary
Related forms
[sed-uh-muh n-tair-uh-lee, sed-uh-muh n-ter-] /ˌsɛd ə mənˈtɛər ə li, ˈsɛd ə mənˌtɛr-/ (Show IPA),
unsedimentarily, adverb
unsedimentary, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for sedimentary
  • It is in fact, layer upon layer of sedimentary rock.
  • Have students read about how sedimentary rock is formed.
  • The area is piled high with sedimentary rock from the heyday of the dinosaurs.
  • Simplified sketch of coupled erosional-depositional sedimentary systems across a continental margin.
  • There's no sedimentary material that is uniform throughout the region, that has any coherence.
  • sedimentary rocks record abrupt shifts in the chemistry of the oceans.
  • Scientists also have chemical evidence of ice ages from sediments and sedimentary rocks.
  • The queen is among many odd rocks in the area, formed as the sea eroded soft sedimentary rock.
  • Overall the amount of preservation of these sedimentary structures indicates a low-energy depositional environment.
  • As it flakes and corrodes it tends to bind with sedimentary clay particles, which lie on the bottom unless stirred up by storms.
British Dictionary definitions for sedimentary


characteristic of, resembling, or containing sediment
(of rocks) formed by the accumulation and consolidation of mineral and organic fragments that have been deposited by water, ice, or wind Compare igneous, metamorphic
Derived Forms
sedimentarily, adverb
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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Word Origin and History for sedimentary

1764, from sediment + -ary. Sedimentary rock attested by 1830 (in Lyell). Sedimental (adj.) is recorded from c.1600.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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sedimentary in Science
Relating to rocks formed when sediment is deposited and becomes tightly compacted. Depending on the origin of the sediments they contain, sedimentary rocks are classified as clastic sedimentary rocks, chemical sedimentary rocks, or evaporites. Sandstone and conglomerate, for example, consist of fragments of broken preexisting rocks or minerals and are classified as clastic sedimentary rocks. Limestone forms from the precipitation of calcium carbonate through water and is classified as a chemical sedimentary rock. Gypsum and halite deposits form through the evaporation of mineral-rich water and are classified as evaporites.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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