EXAMPLES | WORD ORIGIN noun Also epicentrum. . Geology a point, directly above the true center of disturbance, from which the shock waves of an earthquake apparently radiate. a focal point, as of activity: Manhattan's Chinatown is the epicenter of the city's Chinese community.
, especially British ep·i·cen·tre. Origin of epicenter 1885–90;
New Latin epicentrum
on the center. See
center Related forms ep·i·cen·tral, adjective
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Examples from the Web for epicentral Contemporary Examples of epicentral Historical Examples of epicentral
Fig. 28 shows the
epicentral isoseismals as they are drawn by Mr. Earle Sloan.
The centre of its
epicentral area must therefore lie about three miles south-east of Hereford.
Violent as the shock was at the places just mentioned, it must have been still greater in certain parts of the
epicentral area, the sound that accompanied the earthquake was remarkable for its extraordinary loudness.
Somewhat similar methods were employed by Mr. Oldham in the absence of seismographs from the
epicentral area. Word Origin and History for epicentral n.
1887, from Modern Latin
epicentrum (1879 in geological use); see epi- + center. Related: Epicentral (1866).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
The point on the Earth's surface that is directly above the focus (the point of origin) of an earthquake. The epicenter is usually the location where the greatest damage associated with an earthquake occurs. See Note at earthquake.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.