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Bassett Edges

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Part of the Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences Series book series (EESS)

Synonyms

Bassett edges; Exposed edge of strata inclined upward; Outcrop; Strike ridges.

Definition

Bassett edges are outcrops of inclined beds, forming a jagged surface of low irregular projections resulting from differential erosion of often steeply dipping layers of lithified coral shingle, with a bed thickness of a few centimeters and relative relief of 2–3 dm.

A bassett is an old term used by miners in the 18th and 19th centuries to describe the emergence of subsurface geological strata at the ground surface. “Basset edges” was introduced into the modern reef literature by J. Alfred Steers ( Steers, James Alfred (1899–1987) ) to describe the lower cemented vestiges of coral shingle ramparts on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, where “the separate beds are often truncated and the basset edges rise up” (Steers, 1929).

What Steers found particularly interesting was the dip of the beds, which was “very often landward,” implying “that the rest of the spit or ridge of shingle formerly...

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-90-481-2639-2_185
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Bibliography

  • Scoffin, T. P., and McLean, R. F., 1978. Exposed limestones of the northern province of the Great Barrier Reef. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, Series A, 291, 119.

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  • Steers, J. A., 1929. The Queensland coast and the Great Barrier Reefs. Geographical Journal, 74, 232.

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McLean, R. (2011). Bassett Edges. In: Hopley, D. (eds) Encyclopedia of Modern Coral Reefs. Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences Series. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-90-481-2639-2_185

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