[ jee-od-uh-see ]
/ dʒiˈɒd ə si /


the branch of applied mathematics that deals with the measurement of the shape and area of large tracts of country, the exact position of geographical points, and the curvature, shape, and dimensions of the earth.

Nearby words

  1. geode,
  2. geodemographics,
  3. geodesic,
  4. geodesic dome,
  5. geodesic line,
  6. geodetic,
  7. geodetic latitude,
  8. geodetic longitude,
  9. geodetic survey,
  10. geodetic surveying

Also ge·o·det·ics [jee-uh-det-iks] /ˌdʒi əˈdɛt ɪks/.

Origin of geodesy

1560–70; < French géodésie < Greek geōdaisía, equivalent to geō- geo- + daí(ein) to divide + -sia, variant of -ia -ia (generalized from stems ending in t)

Related formsge·od·e·sist, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for geodesy

British Dictionary definitions for geodesy


geodetics (ˌdʒiːəʊˈdɛtɪks)

/ (dʒɪˈɒdɪsɪ) /


the branch of science concerned with determining the exact position of geographical points and the shape and size of the earth
Derived Formsgeodesist, noun

Word Origin for geodesy

C16: from French géodésie, from Greek geōdaisia, from geo- + daiein to divide

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

Word Origin and History for geodesy



1560s, "surveying," from Modern Latin geodaesia, from Greek geodaisia "division of the earth;" ultimately from ge "earth" (see Gaia) + stem of daiein "divide."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Science definitions for geodesy


[ jē-ŏdĭ-sē ]

The scientific study of the size and shape of the Earth, its field of gravity, and such varying phenomena as the motion of the magnetic poles and the tides.
Related formsgeodetic adjective

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.