5 principles of relative dating

The principle of faunal succession is based on the appearance of fossils in sedimentary rocks.

This principle allows sedimentary layers to be viewed as a form of vertical time line, a partial or complete record of the time elapsed from deposition of the lowest layer to deposition of the highest bed.

Though relative dating can only determine the sequential order in which a series of events occurred, not when they occurred, it remains a useful technique.

Relative dating by biostratigraphy is the preferred method in paleontology and is, in some respects, more accurate.

Relative dating is the science of determining the relative order of past events (i.e., the age of an object in comparison to another), without necessarily determining their absolute age (i.e. In geology, rock or superficial deposits, fossils and lithologies can be used to correlate one stratigraphic column with another.

Prior to the discovery of radiometric dating in the early 20th century, which provided a means of absolute dating, archaeologists and geologists used relative dating to determine ages of materials.

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