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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
a fossil fuel (=a fuel such as coal or oil, produced by the gradual decaying of plants and animals)
▪ Global warming may be caused by burning fossil fuels.
fossil fuel
▪ Environmentalists would like to see fossil fuels replaced by renewable energy sources.
living fossil
▪ The main global-warming gas, after all, is carbon dioxide, given off mainly by burning fossil fuels.
▪ Geothermal energy does not involve the burning of fossil fuels and therefore makes a negligible contribution to global warming.
▪ This staining on marble is the result of dry deposition from sulphur dioxide gases produced by the burning of fossil fuels.
▪ Nor do they contribute to environmental pollution by burning fossil fuels.
▪ Hasn't he any conception of the devastation caused to this planet by burning fossil fuels?
▪ And they produce oxygen which animals need to breathe, and which helps to replace that lost by burning fossil fuels.
▪ How do you begin an interview with a three-million-year old fossil?
▪ And bacteria, besides being the simplest form of life we know, are also among the oldest fossils we have discovered.
▪ A fossil assemblage accumulated by a predator thus may not represent any single mammal community from any one habitat.
▪ Of course, many graptoloids also drifted into shallower water, where they are associated with a more normal kind of fossil assemblage.
▪ It is important to distinguish the influences of both, as both may introduce particular sets of biases into the fossil assemblage.
▪ Half a million fossil bones of reptiles and birds have been found in the lava tubes scattered across the landscape.
▪ Owls Owls are probably the major contributors to fossil bone assemblages.
▪ The fossil evidence is confirmed by the record of the genes.
▪ Several specialists questioned whether there is enough fossil evidence yet to support a claim for a new genus.
▪ It is thought that the very first placental mammals were tiny insectivores, but no fossil evidence of them remains.
▪ This staining on marble is the result of dry deposition from sulphur dioxide gases produced by the burning of fossil fuels.
▪ An obvious and technically achievable alternative to fossil fuel combustion is nuclear fission.
▪ Alternative Energy Sources One of the major problems of fossil fuels and particularly coal is pollution.
▪ After all, your editorial on fossil fuels, fearlessly and correctly reported global warming data in degrees Celsius.
▪ Now, remaining supplies of fossil fuels should be saved, not squandered.
▪ But all fossil fuels, especially the cleanest anthracite, burn to produce abundant carbon dioxide.
▪ Nor do they contribute to environmental pollution by burning fossil fuels.
▪ The carbon tax could lead to a doubling of prices for fossil fuels.
▪ We also know that the fossil record is fragmentary in the extreme.
▪ We know about them from fossil records.
▪ Most are microscopic, and many have no skeleton and therefore lack a fossil record.
▪ The fossil record shows that species do not evolve, &038;.
▪ Crocodiles and lizards have a fossil record extending back to the Triassic, snakes to the Cretaceous.
▪ In the 1850s the fossil record began to yield evidence for a new kind of trend within the development of each class.
▪ The greatest problems in the fossil record, however, are the sudden extinctions.
▪ The growth of the human embryo recapitulated the history of animal life as revealed by the fossil record.
▪ We know this from their fossil remains.
▪ Their fossil remains seem to occur with other animals and plants, which are generally accepted as terrestrial.
▪ Figure 7.1 illustrates the very obvious way in which a new fossil species may seem to be diachronous.
▪ A few other fossil species of Rhus are known from the Tertiary rocks.
▪ A major difficulty arises when fossil species disappear for good as the physical environment, over millions of years, inevitably changes.
▪ Ants frequently got caught in the pine resins that were destined to become amber, and numerous fossil species have been recognized.
▪ The thicker shelled species often carry a distinctive sculpture, which is also important in identifying fossil species.
▪ There are species living today related to this fossil species.
▪ Do we carry on burning fossil fuels at rapid rates?
▪ We are hastening this process with the burning of fossil fuels.
▪ Beneath the age of reptiles lay a series of formations containing the fossils only of aquatic creatures.
▪ The importance of the Temple Butte is that it contains fossil skeletons of primitive fish.
▪ Although none of these rocks contain fossils of shelled organisms, some of them do include fossils of single-celled microorganisms.
▪ The Phanerozoic time scale of rocks containing fossils of higher organisms represents 570 million years.
▪ Many species of coelacanth have been found as fossils.
▪ For example, you never find horse fossils among trilobite remains.&038;.
▪ A complete media is found in many Palaeozoic fossil insects and in the Ephemeroptera among recent forms.
▪ Paleontologists have found many transitional fossils representing intermediate forms in the evolution of one major form of life into another.
▪ Here, no vertebrates at all could be found, the fossils consisting only of invertebrates such as the trilobites.
▪ It will now be clear why you can sometimes find so many different fossil gastropod shells together in a single fossil deposit.
▪ Wave of hope Mars probe may have found fossil seas Scientists hope that they may yet discover life on Mars.
▪ After finding a fossil knee, Johanson needed a modern knee for comparison.
▪ They are living fossils, reminders of a universe now lost.
▪ The shock of seeing these living fossils of Xinjiang first led him to question their authenticity.
▪ Fortunately, whales-as much as viruses-are living fossils.
▪ Cartilage does not preserve as fossil as a rule, so most of the evidence of the shark-like fish rests upon teeth.
▪ The zooids themselves are, or course, not preserved as fossils - we only have their vacated homes.
▪ These will all reduce emissions from fossil fuels and so help combat global warming and acid deposition.
▪ The series of fossils shown here demonstrate the different sizes gastropods of one species attain.
▪ The fossil record shows that species do not evolve, &038;.
▪ More interesting still, recent fossil discoveries show that the hip bones of some giant dinosaurs were almost hollow.
▪ Several dinosaur fossils were found in Montana.
▪ I wanted to go out collecting fossils at a place about a mile from here.
▪ Lake beds are thought to be the most likely source of fossils.
▪ Paleontologists have found many transitional fossils representing intermediate forms in the evolution of one major form of life into another.
▪ Their fossils are commonest in Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous rocks.
▪ There have been several suggestions as to how fossil agnathans may fit into a scheme such as this.
▪ We know about them from fossil records.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Fossil \Fos"sil\, n.

  1. A substance dug from the earth. [Obs.]

    Note: Formerly all minerals were called fossils, but the word is now restricted to express the remains of animals and plants found buried in the earth.

  2. (Paleon.) The remains of an animal or plant found in stratified rocks. Most fossils belong to extinct species, but many of the later ones belong to species still living.

  3. A person whose views and opinions are extremely antiquated; one whose sympathies are with a former time rather than with the present. [Colloq.]


Fossil \Fos"sil\, a. [L. fossilis, fr. fodere to dig: cf. F. fossile. See Fosse.]

  1. Dug out of the earth; as, fossil coal; fossil salt.

  2. preserved from a previous geological age; as, fossil water from deep wells; -- usually implying that the object so described has had its substance modified by long residence in the ground, but also used (as with fossil water) in cases where chemical composition is not altered.

  3. (Paleon.) Like or pertaining to fossils; contained in rocks, whether petrified or not; as, fossil plants, shells.

    Fossil copal, a resinous substance, first found in the blue clay at Highgate, near London, and apparently a vegetable resin, partly changed by remaining in the earth.

    Fossil cork, Fossil flax, Fossil paper, or Fossil wood, varieties of amianthus.

    Fossil farina, a soft carbonate of lime.

    Fossil ore, fossiliferous red hematite.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1610s, "any thing dug up;" 1650s (adj.) "obtained by digging" (of coal, salt, etc.), from French fossile (16c.), from Latin fossilis "dug up," from fossus, past participle of fodere "to dig," from PIE root *bhedh- "to dig, pierce."\n

\nRestricted noun sense of "geological remains of a plant or animal" is from 1736 (the adjective in the sense "pertaining to fossils" is from 1660s); slang meaning "old person" first recorded 1859. Fossil fuel (1833) preserves the earlier, broader sense.


n. 1 The mineralized remains of an animal or plant. 2 (context paleontology English) Any preserved evidence of ancient life, including shells, imprints, burrows, coprolites, and organically-produced chemicals.


adj. characteristic of a fossil

  1. n. someone whose style is out of fashion [syn: dodo, fogy, fogey]

  2. the remains (or an impression) of a plant or animal that existed in a past geological age and that has been excavated from the soil

Fossil, OR -- U.S. city in Oregon
Population (2000): 469
Housing Units (2000): 245
Land area (2000): 0.763277 sq. miles (1.976878 sq. km)
Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km)
Total area (2000): 0.763277 sq. miles (1.976878 sq. km)
FIPS code: 26650
Located within: Oregon (OR), FIPS 41
Location: 44.999595 N, 120.214239 W
ZIP Codes (1990):
Note: some ZIP codes may be omitted esp. for suburbs.
Fossil, OR

FOSSIL is a standard protocol for allowing serial communication for telecommunications programs under the DOS operating system. FOSSIL is an acronym for Fido Opus SEAdog Standard Interface Layer. Fido refers to FidoBBS, Opus refers to Opus-CBCS BBS, and SEAdog refers to a Fidonet compatible mailer. The standards document that defines the FOSSIL protocol is maintained by the Fidonet Technical Standards Committee.

Fossil (disambiguation)

A fossil is the mineralized remains of a dead organism.

Fossil may also refer to:

  • FOSSIL, a protocol for serial communications
  • Fossil (file system), a file system used mainly by Plan 9 from Bell Labs
  • Fossil (software), a distributed version control system
  • Fossilization (linguistics), a type of bound morpheme in linguistics
  • Interlanguage fossilization, a linguistic term
  • Fossils (band), a rock band from Kolkata, India
  • Fossil (novel), a book written by Hal Clement
  • The Fossil (play), a play by Carl Sternheim
  • Fossiles, the 12th movement in the musical suite The Carnival of the Animals
  • Fossil, Inc., a clothing/accessories company
  • Fossil, Oregon, a town in the state of Oregon, United States
  • A Pokémon trading card set (see List of Pokémon Trading Card Game sets)
Fossil (software)

Fossil is a distributed version control system, bug tracking system and wiki software server for use in software development created by D. Richard Hipp.

Fossil (novel)

Fossil is a science fiction book written by Hal Clement and first printed in November, 1993. Copyright was reserved to him under his real name, Harry C. Stubbs and the company he associated himself with, Tomorrow, Inc..

Fossil (file system)

Fossil is the default file system in Plan 9 from Bell Labs. It serves the network protocol 9P and runs as a user space daemon, like most Plan 9 file servers. Fossil is different from most other file systems due to its snapshot/archival feature. It can take snapshots of the entire file system on command or automatically (at a user-set interval). These snapshots can be kept on the Fossil partition as long as disk space allows; if the partition fills up then old snapshots will be removed to free up disk space. A snapshot can also be saved permanently to Venti. Fossil and Venti are typically installed together.

Usage examples of "fossil".

It showed a man in antique clothing standing behind a fossil ammonite that almost reached his waist.

This junction produced a complicated pattern of lobes and saddles that is frequently seen in the ammonite fossils found today in Cretaceous marine deposits.

Because they evolved rapidly, had worldwide distribution by virtue of their open-water habitats, and species are readily distinguished, ammonoids are index fossils for the Jurassic.

Our final examples of anomalous pre-Tertiary evidence are not in the category of fossil human bones, but rather in the category of fossil humanlike footprints.

If anomalously old human fossils were found in situations like this, they would be subjected to merciless criticism.

This is quite a bit more recent than the Early Pleistocene date originally ascribed to the Piltdown fossils, but it is still anomalously old for a skull of the fully human type in England.

Measuring concentrations of oxygen isotopes trapped in belemnite guard shell fossils, scientists have determined that the seas of that time were warmer than today.

For instance, from measurements made on belemnite fossils from New Jersey, the ocean temperature in the latter part of the Cretaceous at this latitude seems to have been around 72 degrees Fahrenheit year-round, a warmth comparable to the seas around southern Florida today.

It reminded me of a sepia painting I had once seen done from the ink of a fossil Belemnite that must have perished and become fossilized millions of years ago.

It was a fine-grained gray stone with two fossil belemnites swimming across its surface, like pale comets.

Second, modern experiments have shown that bipedalism does not increase energy efficiency, and as more fossils have been found we now recognise that early bipedal apes lived in environments where trees were plentiful.

Toroca had left the other surveyors back at the great cliffs on the storm-swept coast, looking for any fossils at all from below the Bookmark layer, and cataloging the myriad forms they found above it.

His team worked every daylight moment just below the chalk seam of the Bookmark layer, the bottommost rock stratum containing fossils, but nothing turned up.

Park of Extinct Animals was breached and many of the inner enclosures were opened, releasing into the wilderness nearly the entire extraordinary collection of carefully cloned beasts of yesteryear: moas, quaggas, giant ground sloths, dodos, passenger pigeons, aurochs, oryxes, saber-toothed cats, great auks, cahows and many another lost species that had been called back from oblivion by the most painstaking manipulation of fossil genetic material.

Franz Weidenreich assumed leadership of the Cenozoic Research Laboratory and wrote a comprehensive series of reports on the Beijing man fossils.