Definition of stratum
strataplay \ˈstrā-tə, ˈstra-\
1 : a bed or layer artificially made
2a : a sheetlike mass of sedimentary rock or earth of one kind lying between beds of other kindsb : a region of the sea or atmosphere that is analogous to a stratum of the earthc : a layer of tissue deep stratum of the skind : a layer in which archaeological material (such as artifacts, skeletons, and dwelling remains) is found on excavation
3a : a part of a historical or sociological series representing a period or a stage of developmentb : a socioeconomic level of society comprising persons of the same or similar status especially with regard to education or culture
4 : one of a series of layers, levels, or gradations in an ordered system strata of thought
5 : a statistical subpopulation
Is strata singular or plural?
The plural strata has occasionally been used as a singular since the 18th century and is sometimes given the plural stratas. there was a strata of Paris which mere criticism of books fails to get hold of — Ezra Pound a Roman burial ground suggests stratas of corruption and decay — Connie Fletcher, Booklist Current evidence shows senses 2, 3b, and 4 so used, with sense 3b the most common. Singular strata is persistent but not frequent. Strata may someday establish itself as a singular like agenda, but that use is still not established.
Examples of stratum in a Sentence
the lower strata of society have been hit especially hard by this economic downturn
the level of writing in that pop novel is several strata beneath that of serious fiction
Recent Examples of stratum from the Web
Those stuck in the lower economic strata, including the working poor, migrant workers, and students from poorer, rural areas, have few options for living space.
Although his times weren’t the fastest among running backs, Fournette’s performance was impressive enough to quiet doubters and keep him in that rarefied strata of top prospects at his position.
There are two strata of justice in this country, one for those with connections and protection, and the other for those in the way.
The victims tend to be people from diverse social and economic strata.
A daylong trip around the studio is like a tour of Brazil that ranges through time, terrain and every stratum of society.
Today's fortunes are being made in a global economic environment in which an affluent global civilization and power structure are being forged even as a large stratum of our society remains rooted in place.
Certainly, there is within them probably a fairly clear illustration about how our tax code — and, indeed, our entire economic system — has been gamed to benefit the folks in Romney's economic stratum, but that's hardly a secret anymore.
The stratigraphic horizons in the lower half of the mountainside are dipping at a slightly higher angle (from right to left) than the strata near the top of the exposure.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'stratum'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
In geology, a stratum is a layer of rock or soil that is distinct from those above and below it. Rock and soil strata (notice the plural form) can be seen in road cuts, cliffs, quarries, riverbanks, and sand dunes, and in pieces of limestone, slate, and shale. Archaeologists digging in historical sites are careful to note the stratum where each artifact is found. Earth scientists divide the earth's atmosphere into strata, just as oceanographers divide the ocean's depths into strata. And for social scientists, a stratum is a group of people who are similar in some way, such as education, culture, or income.
Origin and Etymology of stratum
New Latin, from Latin, spread, bed, from neuter of stratus, past participle of sternere to spread out — more at strew
First Known Use: 1599
STRATUM Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of stratum for English Language Learners
: one of usually many layers of a substance (such as rock)
: a level of society made up of people of the same rank or position
STRATUM Defined for Kids
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