• WordNet 3.6
    • adj carboniferous relating to or consisting of or yielding carbon
    • adj carboniferous of or relating to the Carboniferous geologic era "carboniferous rock system"
    • n Carboniferous from 345 million to 280 million years ago
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • a Carboniferous kär`bŏn*ĭf"ẽr*ŭs Producing or containing carbon or coal.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • Carboniferous Containing or yielding carbon or coal. In geology, almost exclusively used in designating that assemblage of strata from which the coal of England, France, Germany, and the United States is for the most part obtained. The Carboniferous series is of the Paleozoic age, and is the most recent portion of the Paleozoic. It is overlaid by the Permian rocks, which belong to the closing era of the Carboniferous age, and is underlaid by the Devonian. The Carboniferous, over large areas both in Europe and North America, is separable into three more or less distinct groups: the coal-measures, the millstone-grit, and the mountain limestone. The first of these three is a series of shales and clays, with which the coal-beds themselves are inter-stratified. This part of the series is sometimes several thousand feet in thickness, and the number and thickness of the intercalated coal-beds differ greatly in different regions. The millstone-grit is a detrital rock ordinarily quite silicious, and assuming all degrees of fineness, from that of a fine-grained gritstone to that of a coarse conglomerate. Its thickness varies greatly in various regions. The mountain limestone is a calcareous rock, often rich in fossils of marine origin, and sometimes having a thickness of over 3,000 feet. See coal, coal-measures, millstone-grit, and mountain limestone (under limestone).
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • Carboniferous producing carbon or coal
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Carbon, + -ferous,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr. carbone—L. carbon-em, coal.


In literature:

Beds of a higher Carboniferous zone are retained in synclinals near Rush.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 8, Slice 7" by Various
These afford the clearest evidences of glaciation on a great scale in early Carboniferous times.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 5, Slice 2" by Various
From England, Carboniferous rocks can be followed across northern and central France, into Germany, Bohemia, the Alps, Italy and Spain.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 5, Slice 3" by Various
It is from such evidence that our knowledge of the Carboniferous flora has been chiefly derived.
"Coal" by Raphael Meldola
On top of the Devonian lies the "Carboniferous" series, which complete the series of the primary period.
"Nature's Miracles, Volume 1" by Elisha Gray
The dolerite of Fair Head sends off sheets along the bedding-planes of these carboniferous strata.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 2, Slice 2" by Various
The Trilobites are known only as fossils, mostly Silurian and prae-Silurian; a few are found in Carboniferous and Permian strata.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 2, Slice 3" by Various
Later on he investigated the Carboniferous, Devonian and Silurian formations.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 2, Slice 4" by Various
Near Dinant carboniferous beds are infolded among the Devonian.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 2, Slice 5" by Various
Contemporaneous volcanic rocks, belonging to three stages of the Carboniferous formation, occur in Arran.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 2, Slice 6" by Various

In poetry:

"Wert thou true spectator of that mighty forest
When above thy head the stately Sigillaria
Reared its columned trunks in that remote and distant
Carboniferous epoch?
"To The Pliocene Skull" by Francis Bret Harte

In news:

Pennsylvanian or Late, Upper Carboniferous.

In science:

Also, the particularly long Carboniferous-Permian glaciation, correlates with with the SFR peak at 300 Myr BP and the last LMC perigalacticon.
The Spiral Structure of the Milky Way, Cosmic Rays, and Ice Age Epochs on Earth
It would not explain though the extent the the Carboniferous-Permian IAE. A third astronomical caveat has to do with the star formation rate.
The Spiral Structure of the Milky Way, Cosmic Rays, and Ice Age Epochs on Earth