Definition of petrification in English:

petrification

Syllabification: pet·ri·fi·ca·tion
Pronunciation: /ˌpetrəfiˈkāSHən
 
/

noun

  • 1The process by which organic matter exposed to minerals over a long period is turned into a stony substance.
    More example sentences
    • We are constantly told that geological processes like petrifaction, fossilisation, and stalagmite formation take millions of years - an unimaginably long time.
    • The fossilization process known as petrifaction usually begins when a tree or log is buried in silica-rich, alkaline volcanic ash or mud.
    • In petrifaction (sensu stricto) the organic cell walls may decay and be replaced by another phase of minerals, usually with a similar chemical composition to the first phase.
  • 1.1A state of extreme fear, making someone unable to move: his heavy footfalls served to spur Paul out of his petrification
    More example sentences
    • Liberalism provides valorization of the individual subject and the rule of law against the reactionary potential of institutional petrifaction and authoritarian principles.
    • I started glowing in my absolute petrifaction of the dark.
    • Kinamori looked at him, absolute petrifaction written on her face.
  • 1.2An organic object that has been turned to stone.
    More example sentences
    • Cuticle was not preserved on the surfaces of the compressions, although surface features could be observed in parts of some fossils preserved as limonite petrifactions.
    • Petrifications, where no organic material remains, are usually prepared as thin sections or polished and studied under reflected light.
    • However, Mesozoic examples of insect wood boring occur in petrifactions, many of which were deposited in drier, more riparian habitats.

More definitions of petrification

Definition of petrification in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day coloratura
Pronunciation: ˌkɒlərəˈtjʊərə
noun
elaborate ornamentation of a vocal melody