Definition of terrane in English:



  • A fault-bounded area or region with a distinctive stratigraphy, structure, and geological history.

    • ‘The contrasting Neoproterozoic and Early Palaeozoic histories of the various Variscan terranes of Europe provide a key to palaeogeographical reconstructions.’
    • ‘The Murihiku Terrane is one of several Permian to early Cretaceous tectonostratigraphic terranes comprising the basement underlying New Zealand.’
    • ‘Based on tectonostratigraphic, palaeomagnetic and palacobiogeographical studies, complex assemblies of terranes have been recognized.’
    • ‘Rift basins in the Red Sea area developed in terranes accreted in Pan-African time, and it is believed that some of these ancient sutures controlled later Red Sea rifting.’
    • ‘We contrast the geological development of the Bainang terrane with that of other terranes in the region and consider this in the broader context of Neotethys evolution.’


Early 19th century: from popular Latin terranum. Compare with terrain.