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USGS CMG InfoBank: Uniformitarianism

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Comment: 07:33 - 08:39 (01:06)
Source: Annenberg/CPB Resources - Earth Revealed - 10. Geologic Time
Keywords: "James Hutton", Bible, "Theory of Uniformity", Uniformitarianism, uniformity, river, sediment, "sea floor", "sedimentary rock", Scotland, flood, landscape

Our transcription: Hutton reasoned that if it takes about a year for a river to deposit a millimeter thick layer of sediment on the sea floor, that it must take at least a million years to lay down the thousand meter thick sequences of sedimentary rock that he had observed in some parts of Scotland.
Many church authorities were stunned by Hutton's research, and not only because he claimed the world is much older than the Bible implied.
Hutton also showed that supernatural events like the Biblical Flood aren't needed to explain why the world's surface looks the way it does.
Ordinary processes seen everyday could produce the same landscape given enough time.
Hutton concluded that these processes have operated in the same manner throughout Earth's history.
This idea became known as the "Theory of Uniformity", or later as "Uniformitarianism".

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