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[krey-ton] /ˈkreɪ tɒn/
noun, Geology.
a relatively rigid and immobile region of continental portions of the earth's crust.
See also platform (def 15), shield (def 13).
Origin of craton
1940-45; < German Kraton, based on Greek krátos power; cf. -cracy, -on2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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British Dictionary definitions for craton


(geology) a stable part of the earth's continental crust or lithosphere that has not been deformed significantly for many millions, even hundreds of millions, of years See shield (sense 7)
Derived Forms
cratonic (krəˈtɒnɪk) adjective
Word Origin
C20: from Greek kratos strength
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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craton in Science
A large portion of a continental plate that has been relatively undisturbed since the Precambrian era and includes both shield and platform layers.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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