- a layer of material, naturally or artificially formed, often one of a number of parallel layers one upon another: a stratum of ancient foundations.
- one of a number of portions or divisions likened to layers or levels: an allegory with many strata of meaning.
- Geology. a single bed of sedimentary rock, generally consisting of one kind of matter representing continuous deposition.
- Biology. a layer of tissue; lamella.
- Ecology. (in a plant community) a layer of vegetation, usually of the same or similar height.
- a layer of the ocean or the atmosphere distinguished by natural or arbitrary limits.
- Sociology. a level or grade of a people or population with reference to social position, education, etc.: the lowest stratum of society.
- Linguistics. (in stratificational grammar) a major subdivision of linguistic structure.Compare level(def 17).
Origin of stratum
Examples from the Web for strata
Gazing on the strata of the earth, he reads the fate of his species.Vivian Grey
Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli
Now my theory is, you 're in strata here of what we call the Triassic Age.Joy (First Series Plays)
From this it was only a step to the earth's strata, fossils, crystals—a fresh lecture.The Great Hunger
The strata of the past, so visible in other medival cities, are not apparent here.Italy, the Magic Land
And now, what will be the character of these strata, old and new?Essays: Scientific, Political, & Speculative, Vol. I
- a plural of stratum
- (usually plural) any of the distinct layers into which sedimentary rocks are divided
- biology a single layer of tissue or cells
- a layer of any material, esp one of several parallel layers
- a layer of ocean or atmosphere either naturally or arbitrarily demarcated
- a level of a social hierarchy that is distinguished according to such criteria as educational achievement or caste status
Word Origin and History for strata
c.1700, plural of stratum.
"horizontal layer," 1590s, from Modern Latin stratum, special use of Latin stratum "thing spread out, coverlet, pavement," from neuter past participle of sternere "to spread out, lay down, stretch out," from PIE *stre-to- "to stretch, extend," from root *stere- "to spread, extend, stretch out" (see structure (n.)).
- A horizontal layer of material, especially one of several parallel layers arranged one on top of another.
- Any of the layers of differentiated tissue forming an anatomical structure.
- A layer of sedimentary rock whose composition is more or less the same throughout and that is visibly different from the rock layers above and below it.
- A layer of tissue, as of the skin or another organ.