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cutaway of an erupting volcano


n. pl. vol·ca·noes or vol·ca·nos
a. An opening in the earth's crust from which lava, ash, and hot gases flow or are ejected during an eruption.
b. A similar opening on the surface of another celestial object.
2. A usually cone-shaped mountain formed from the materials issuing from such an opening.

[Italian, from Spanish volcán or Portuguese volcão, both probably from Latin volcānus, vulcānus, fire, flames, from Volcānus, Vulcan.]


See also geology; mountains.

the phenomena connected with volcanoes and volcanic activity. Also vulcanism.volcanist, n.
Geology. the scientific study of volcanoes and volcanic phenomena. Also vulcanology.volcanologist, n. — volcanologic, volcanological, adj.
References in classic literature ?
It is supposed that these vast plains are strewn with blocks of lava from the neighboring volcanoes on its right, Ptolemy, Purbach, Arzachel.
Thus we beheld, from one point of view, three great active volcanoes, each about seven thousand feet high.
Volcanoes, so plentiful in the first days of the world, are being extinguished by degrees; the internal heat is weakened, the temperature of the lower strata of the globe is lowered by a perceptible quantity every century to the detriment of our globe, for its heat is its life.
But, this study is the first to take those observations and stretch them across all volcanoes," she said.
The chart below contains information on some of the world's most active volcanoes.
On several occasions, scientists have studied underwater volcanoes as they've grown to the ocean surface.
During explosive eruptions, volcanoes spew sulfur dioxide gas sky-high.
Iceland, for example, has more than 30 active volcanoes.
VOLCANO VILLAGE, Hawaii - It's difficult enough to tackle Hawaii Volcanoes National Park in a day, but factoring in a drive from Kona, the Kohala Coast or even nearby Hilo will only complicate the undertaking.
Scientists have long suspected that undersea volcanoes exist along the Aleutian Island chain.
Volcanoes are some of the most terrifying because of how unpredictable they are and how much destruction they can rain down upon the planet.
WORLDS ON FIRE: Volcanoes on the Earth, the Moon, Mars, Venus, and Io CHARLES FRANKEL