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 (sĕn′ə-zō′ĭk, sē′nə-)
Of, relating to, or being the most recent era of geologic time, from about 66 million years ago to the present. The Cenozoic Era includes the Tertiary Period and the Quaternary Period and is characterized by the formation of modern continents, glaciation, and the diversification of mammals, birds, and plants. See Table at geologic time.
The Cenozoic Era.

[Greek kainos, new; see ken- in Indo-European roots + -zoic.]


(ˌsiːnəʊˈzəʊɪk) or




(Geological Science) of, denoting, or relating to the most recent geological era, which began 65 000 000 years ago: characterized by the development and increase of the mammals
(Geological Science) the Cenozoic the Cenozoic era
[C19: from Greek kainos new, recent + zōikos, from zōion animal]


(ˌsi nəˈzoʊ ɪk, ˌsɛn ə-)
1. noting or pertaining to the present era, beginning 65 million years ago, characterized by the ascendancy of mammals. See geologic time.
2. the Cenozoic Era or group of systems.
[1850–55; < Greek kainó(s) recent + -zoic]


The most recent era of geologic time, from about 65 million years ago to the present. The Cenozoic Era is characterized by the formation of modern continents and the diversification of mammals and plants. See Chart at geologic time.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Cenozoic - approximately the last 63 million yearsCenozoic - approximately the last 63 million years
Phanerozoic, Phanerozoic aeon, Phanerozoic eon - the period from about 5,400 million years ago until the present
Age of Man, Quaternary, Quaternary period - last 2 million years
Tertiary, Tertiary period - from 63 million to 2 million years ago
Adj.1.Cenozoic - of or relating to or denoting the Cenozoic era
References in periodicals archive ?
Objective: Robust stratigraphic correlations are essential in deciphering Earth History, yet there are crucial gaps and limitations in the current status of Cenozoic planktonic foraminiferal biochronology.
The Niger Delta has three major depositional prisms: (1) a Cretaceous deltaic complex developed 600 miles inland from the mouth of the Niger Delta, (2) a Late Cretaceous to Palaeogene "proto Niger" delta complex formed seawards of the earlier delta, and (3) the younger Cenozoic complex built out over newly formed oceanic crust as the South Atlantic opened during the separation of the South American and African tectonic plates.
The progressive movement of the southern continents during the Early Cenozoic resulted in the breakup of the Weddellian Province into smaller, discrete biogeographic units; the distribution of paleoaustral molluscs changed as a result of the separation and isolation of New Zealand from Antarctica (Zinsmeister 1982).
Somehow, nineteenth century geologists and paleontologists were able to find freshwater fossils that have alluded later field investigations, which means there are a number of old, poorly documented species of western North America Mesozoic and Cenozoic continental mollusks.
Dr Stepan Ivantsov, a scientific researcher in the Laboratory of Mesozoic and Cenozoic Continental Ecosystems, said: "We can confidently say we have found a new species.
His research interests include ichnology and geology of the lower Paleozoic of north Wales, the Paleozoic of eastern Canada and Maine, and the Cenozoic of the Antilles.
Late Cenozoic environments and hominid evolution: a tribute to Bill Bishop: 27-38.
Until recently, everybody agreed that we live in the Holocene epoch of the Quaternary period, which in turn is part of the 65-million-year old Cenozoic era, the most recent phase of the 540-million-year Phanerozoic aeon.
This basin was part of the stable Gowndwana supercontinent in the Paleozoic era and a passive margin in the Mesozoic era and it became a site of convergent orogeny in the Cenozoic era [7].
Like many other large mountain ranges, such as the great Himalayas, the Andes began to form during the Cenozoic period, which began about 60 million years ago and happened to coincide with a major perturbation in the cycling of atmospheric carbon dioxide.
Cenozoic biogeography and evolution in direct-developing frogs of Central America (Leptodactylidae: Eleutherodactylus) as inferred from a phyloge netic analysis of nuclear and mitochondrial genes.