Osberg, Philip H. Department of Geological Sciences, University of Maine, Orono, Maine.
Last reviewed:October 2019
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A fold in layered rocks in which the strata are inclined down and away from the axes. The simplest anticlines (see illustration) are symmetrical, but in more highly deformed regions they may be asymmetrical, overturned, or recumbent. Most anticlines are elongate with axes that plunge toward the extremities of the fold, but some have no distinct trend; the latter are called domes. Generally, the stratigraphically older rocks are found toward the center of curvature of an anticline, but in more complex structures these simple relations need not hold. Under such circumstances, it is sometimes convenient to recognize two types of anticlines. Stratigraphic anticlines are those folds, regardless of their observed forms, that are inferred from stratigraphic information to have been anticlines originally. Structural anticlines are those that have forms of anticlines, regardless of their original form. See also: Fold and fold systems; Syncline
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