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[noun out-krop; verb out-krop] /noun ˈaʊtˌkrɒp; verb ˌaʊtˈkrɒp/
  1. a cropping out, as of a stratum or vein at the surface of the earth.
  2. the exposed portion of such a stratum or vein.
something that emerges suddenly or violently in the manner of an outcrop; outbreak:
an outcrop of student demonstrations.
verb (used without object), outcropped, outcropping.
to crop out, as strata.
Origin of outcrop
First recorded in 1760-70; noun use of verb phrase crop out Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for outcropping
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • All these are but the outcropping of some constitutional affection and should be treated accordingly.

    Plain Talks on Avoided Subjects Henry Newell Guernsey
  • But the outcropping willows at least served one useful purpose.

    The Bungalow Boys Along the Yukon Dexter J. Forrester
  • The outcropping of ancestral types of mentality is observed to underlie many of the manifestations of vice and crime.

    Not Guilty Robert Blatchford
  • Rick cut and secured the camera to an outcropping with its safety line.

    The Wailing Octopus Harold Leland Goodwin
  • Lance returned by way of the shelf to the outcropping of rocks that would leave no trace of his passing.

    Rim o' the World B. M. Bower
  • A blood splash stared at them from an outcropping slope of rock.

    Mavericks William MacLeod Raine
  • It is furnished by every bed of limestone, every outcropping fragment of fossil-bearing rock, every stratified cliff.

  • The two sat upon an outcropping of stone and gazed down upon it.

    Foes Mary Johnston
  • So Orede stayed uninhabited until a hunting-party shooting wild cattle found an outcropping of heavy-metal ore.

    Pariah Planet Murray Leinster
British Dictionary definitions for outcropping


noun (ˈaʊtˌkrɒp)
part of a rock formation or mineral vein that appears at the surface of the earth
an emergence; appearance
verb (intransitive) (ˌaʊtˈkrɒp) -crops, -cropping, -cropped
(of rock strata, mineral veins, etc) to protrude through the surface of the earth
another word for crop out
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 outcropping



1805, in geology, "exposure of rocks at the surface," from out + crop (n.) in its sense of "sprout, head."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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outcropping in Science
An area of visible bedrock that is not covered with soil.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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