Start Cross cutting relationships used relative dating

Cross cutting relationships used relative dating

Sediment deposited on steep slopes will be washed away before it is buried and lithified to become sedimentary rock, but sediment deposited in nearly horizontal layers can be buried and lithified.

Long before geologists tried to quantify the age of the Earth they developed techniques to determine which geologic events preceded another, what are termed "relative age” relationships.

These techniques were first articulated by Nicolas Steno, a Dane living in the Medici court of Italy in the 17th C.

He concluded that process that are currently operating on the Earth must be the same processes that operated in the past.