Dictionary.com

stratum

[ strey-tuhm, strat-uhm ]
/ ˈstreɪ təm, ˈstræt əm /
Save This Word!
See synonyms for: stratum / strata on Thesaurus.com

noun, plural stra·ta [strey-tuh, strat-uh], /ˈstreɪ tə, ˈstræt ə/, stra·tums.

QUIZZES

QUIZ YOURSELF ON AFFECT VS. EFFECT!

In effect, this quiz will prove whether or not you have the skills to know the difference between “affect” and “effect.”
Question 1 of 7
The rainy weather could not ________ my elated spirits on my graduation day.

Origin of stratum

1590–1600; <Latin strātum literally, a cover, noun use of neuter of strātus, past participle of sternere to spread, strew, equivalent to strā- variant stem + -tus past participle suffix
Strata, historically the plural of stratum, is occasionally used as a singular: The lowest economic strata consists of the permanently unemployable. Less frequently, a plural stratas occurs: Several stratas of settlement can be seen in the excavation. At present, these uses are not well established, and they are condemned in usage guides. Strata may eventually become part of a group of borrowed plurals that are now used as singulars in English, such as agenda and candelabra, but it is not yet in that category. See also agenda, criterion, media, phenomena.
stratous, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for stratum

stratum
/ (ˈstrɑːtəm) /

noun plural -ta (-tə) or -tums

(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
stratal, adjective
C16: via New Latin from Latin: something strewn, from sternere to scatter
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

Medical definitions for stratum

stratum
[ strātəm, strătəm ]

n. pl. stra•tums

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.
stratal (-təl) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for stratum

stratum
[ strātəm, strătəm ]

Plural strata stratums

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.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Learning At Home Just Got Easier!