Definition of Palaeozoic in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌpalɪə(ʊ)ˈzəʊɪk/
Pronunciation: /ˌpeɪlɪə(ʊ)ˈzəʊɪk/
(US Paleozoic)


1Relating to or denoting the era between the Precambrian aeon and the Mesozoic era. Formerly called Primary.
Example sentences
  • Cliffs forming the margins of rifts are thought to have developed in this way, with retreat occurring since the Late Cretaceous in Precambrian to Palaeozoic rocks.
  • The Anatolian region has been formed by the amalgamation of smaller continental fragments that were formerly sited at the northern margin of Gondwana during late Palaeozoic and early Mesozoic times.
  • Pre-Aptian structure reflects both Palaeozoic rifting and Mesozoic modification.
1.1 (as noun the Palaeozoic) The Palaeozoic era or the system of rocks deposited during it.

The Palaeozoic lasted from about 570 to 245 million years ago, its end being marked by mass extinctions. The Lower Palaeozoic sub-era comprises the Cambrian, Ordovician, and Silurian periods, and the Upper Palaeozoic sub-era comprises the Devonian, Carboniferous, and Permian periods. The era began with the first invertebrates with hard external skeletons, notably trilobites, and ended with the rise to dominance of the reptiles.


Mid 19th century: from palaeo- + Greek zōē 'life' + -ic.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: Palaeo|zo¦ic

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