Definition of catena in US English:



  • 1A connected series or chain.

    • ‘Since then catenas have been recognized in a variety of areas and under a variety of climatic conditions, an indication of the strength of the relationship between soil and topography.’
    • ‘Equation 2, though derived for the growth of cells, may be used to conceptualize how water transport from selected points along the soil - stem - leaf catena affects the growth of leaves.’
    1. 1.1 A connected series of texts written by early Christian theologians.
      • ‘5 This verse was also used in the previous sermon as one of the quotations in the catena of Scripture referred to.’
      • ‘Finally, in ‘The Law of the Spirit,’ Newman, again using 6: 11 in a catena of verses, unabashedly declares the inward transformation of the sinner; we are made righteous.’


Mid 17th century: from Latin, ‘chain’, originally in catena patrum ‘chain of the (Church) Fathers’.