in·​ter·​gla·​cial | \ ˌin-tər-ˈglā-shəl How to pronounce interglacial (audio) \

Definition of interglacial

: a warm period between glacial epochs

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Other Words from interglacial

interglacial adjective

Examples of interglacial in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But in the warm periods between ice ages, known as interglacials, scientists assume the Atlantic circulation is stable. Paul Voosen, Science | AAAS, "Ancient warming threw this crucial Atlantic current into chaos. It could happen again," 26 Mar. 2020 Not all the difference in temperature between interglacials and ice ages was because of carbon dioxide. The Economist, "The past, present and future of climate change," 21 Sep. 2019 Today’s level is 1.45 times higher than that of a typical interglacial. The Economist, "The past, present and future of climate change," 21 Sep. 2019 Just like home Those ratios line up with climate models that suggest a wetter, more hospitable environment in Arabia, courtesy of a shift in Africa’s monsoons during periods of warmer global climate called interglacials. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Archaeologists find 300,000-year-old stone tools in Saudi Arabia," 29 Oct. 2018 To begin with, there are far more signs of life during the interglacials, indicating that the area was probably covered by sea ice during glacial periods; sediments were much siltier during these times. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Major Antarctic ice sheet shrank when it wasn’t much warmer than now," 20 Sep. 2018 The present interglacial, which also has not featured a major ice sheet retreat, looks similar to the earlier one where the glaciers also remained stable. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Major Antarctic ice sheet shrank when it wasn’t much warmer than now," 20 Sep. 2018 Warm Air, Warm Ocean, Bad Juju Deconto and Pollard’s model shows how the West Antarctic ice could have collapsed 125,000 years ago, generating the high seas of the last interglacial. National Geographic, "Why the New Sea Level Alarm Can't Be Ignored," 1 Apr. 2016 The answers vary, since the span of possible ages for the site—120,000 to 140,000 years ago—cover the beginning of the last interglacial, the warm period before the last ice age. National Geographic, "Humans in California 130,000 Years Ago? Get the Facts," 26 Apr. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'interglacial.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of interglacial

1867, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for interglacial

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The first known use of interglacial was in 1867

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Statistics for interglacial

Last Updated

19 Apr 2020

Cite this Entry

“Interglacial.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 May. 2020.

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