Definition of graben in English:



  • An elongated block of the earth's crust lying between two faults and displaced downwards relative to the blocks on either side, as in a rift valley.

    • ‘The area is characterized by a series of low-relief Jurassic horsts and graben.’
    • ‘Earlier workers typically regarded the Messaras basin as a simple east-west-trending graben.’
    • ‘The fault discovered by the team begins near the Swiss Jura mountains south of Basel and extends nearly five miles northeasterly through the Rhine graben, a valley near the city's southern edge.’
    • ‘These faults bound horsts, grabens and tilted blocks.’
    • ‘A graben is a down-dropped block of the crust resulting from extension, or pulling, of the crust.’


Late 19th century: from German Graben a ditch.