Definition of palynology in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌpalɪˈnɒlədʒi/


[mass noun]
The study of pollen grains and other spores, especially as found in archaeological or geological deposits. Pollen extracted from such deposits may be used for radiocarbon dating and for studying past climates and environments by identifying plants then growing.
Example sentences
  • Palaeobotany includes not only macrofossil plants but also microscopic plant material that may be included in palynology, the study of fossil spores and pollen and other organic-walled microfossils.
  • We interpret these results in light of Gnetalean palynology and the geological record of western Namibia.
  • Metagentiana was separated from Gentiana on the basis of observations related to its gross morphology, floral anatomy, chromosomes, palynology, embryology and molecular data.



Example sentences
  • Individual laminae contain unsorted palynological debris with a consistent ratio of marine and terrestrial components.
  • A Pliocene age for the Siesta palaeosol and Nothofagus fossils has been inferred from diatom and palynological biostratigraphy.
  • Recent palynological research has revealed diverse exine ornamentation in Rheum, but the variations in ornamentation are not consistent with the morphological classification.


Example sentences
  • Diamond answers by way of a true-life detective story, one in which the heroes are anthropologists, paleontologists, and palynologists (who study the structure and dispersal of pollen).
  • A further complication has been the studies by palynologists, scientists who study spores and pollen, who use yet another system for naming the fossil species.
  • Identification was assisted by the independent assessments of a professional palynologist (someone who studies pollen) who did not know that the specimens came from ‘Precambrian’ rock.


1940s: from Greek palunein 'sprinkle' + -logy.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: paly|nol¦ogy

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