supercontinent

[soo-per-kon-tn-uhnt]
noun Geology.
a hypothetical protocontinent of the remote geologic past that rifted apart to form the continents of today.
Compare Pangaea.


Origin:
1955–60; super- + continent

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Collins
World English Dictionary
supercontinent (ˈsuːpəˌkɒntɪnənt)
 
n
a great landmass thought to have existed in the geological past and to have split into smaller landmasses, which drifted and formed the present continents

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
supercontinent   (s'pər-kŏn'tə-nənt)  Pronunciation Key 
A large continent that, according to the theory of plate tectonics, is thought to have split into smaller continents in the geologic past. The supercontinent Pangaea is believed to have formed when earlier continental landmasses came together sometime before the Permian Period, staying together until after the Triassic Period, when it broke into the smaller supercontinents Laurasia and Gondwanaland. These supercontinents are believed to have later separated into the landmasses that correspond to the current continents. Other supercontinents are hypothesized to have formed and broken apart earlier in geologic time.
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Example sentences
Secular trends in the geologic record, ore deposits, and the supercontinent cycle.
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