Quiz: Remember the definition of mal de mer?


[soo-per-puh-zish-uh n] /ˌsu pər pəˈzɪʃ ən/
noun, Geology
the order in which sedimentary strata are superposed one above another.
1790-1800; < French superposition; see super-, position Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for superposition
  • Some letters were said even to stand the test of superposition.
  • The cool thing about the electric field is that it obeys the idea of superposition.
  • The result is a superposition of different levels of information that are integrated to the real objects.
  • It is based on superposition, a condition that cannot be observed by definition.
  • Principle of superposition does not suggest that a particle can exist at more than one place.
  • It isn't the diamonds that are in a state of superposition, simultaneously here and there.
  • The jostling of atoms of large objects collapses the state of superposition.
  • The superposition of the ground and sky motion is simply mesmerizing.
  • Entanglement can be thought of in terms of superposition of waves.
  • If large protein molecules can select a shape via a large superposition, such effects should also be present in metal lattices.
British Dictionary definitions for superposition


the act of superposing or state of being superposed
(geology) the principle that in any sequence of sedimentary rocks which has not been disturbed, the oldest strata lie at the bottom and the youngest at the top
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for superposition

1650s, from French superposition, from Late Latin superpositionem (nominative superpositio), noun of action from past participle stem of superponere, from super (see super-) + ponere "to put, place" (see position).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
superposition in Science
  1. The principle that in a group of stratified sedimentary rocks the lowest were the earliest to be deposited.

  2. The principle by which the description of the state of a physical system can be broken down into descriptions that are themselves possible states of the system. For example, harmonic motion, as of a violin string, can be analyzed as the sum of harmonic frequencies or harmonics, each of which is itself a kind of harmonic motion; harmonic motion is therefore a superposition of individual harmonics.

  3. The combination of two or more physical states, such as waves, to form a new physical state in accordance with this principle. See also wave, See Note at Schrödinger.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for superposition

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for superposition

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with superposition