[ kat-uh-kley-sis, kuh-tak-luh-sis ]
/ ˌkæt əˈkleɪ sɪs, kəˈtæk lə sɪs /

noun Petrology.

a process of deformation or metamorphism in which the grains of a rock are fractured and rotated.

Origin of cataclasis

< Greek katáklasis refraction, equivalent to katakla-, stem of kataklân to break off, refract, break down (kata- cata- + klân to break) + -sis -sis; compare Norwegian kataklasstruktur (1885)

Related forms

cat·a·clas·tic [kat-uh-klas-tik] /ˌkæt əˈklæs tɪk/, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for cataclasis


/ (ˌkætəˈkleɪsɪs) /

noun plural -ses (-siːz)

geology the deformation of rocks by crushing and shearing

Derived Forms

cataclastic (ˌkætəˈklæstɪk), adjective

Word Origin for cataclasis

C19: New Latin, from Greek, from cata- + klasis a breaking
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