Definitions for: Horizon

[n] the range of interest or activity that can be anticipated; "It is beyond the horizon of present knowledge"
[n] the line at which the sky and Earth appear to meet
[n] the great circle on the celestial sphere whose plane passes through the sensible horizon and the center of the Earth
[n] a specific layer or stratum of soil or subsoil in a vertical cross section of land

Webster (1913) Definition: Ho*ri"zon, n. [F., fr. L. horizon, fr. Gr. ? (sc. ?)
the bounding line, horizon, fr. ? to bound, fr. ? boundary,
1. The circle which bounds that part of the earth's surface
visible to a spectator from a given point; the apparent
junction of the earth and sky.

And when the morning sun shall raise his car Above
the border of this horizon. --Shak.

All the horizon round Invested with bright rays.

2. (Astron.)
(a) A plane passing through the eye of the spectator and
at right angles to the vertical at a given place; a
plane tangent to the earth's surface at that place;
called distinctively the sensible horizon.
(b) A plane parallel to the sensible horizon of a place,
and passing through the earth's center; -- called also
rational or celestial horizon.
(c) (Naut.) The unbroken line separating sky and water, as
seen by an eye at a given elevation, no land being

3. (Geol.) The epoch or time during which a deposit was made.

The strata all over the earth, which were formed at
the same time, are said to belong to the same
geological horizon. --Le Conte.

4. (Painting) The chief horizontal line in a picture of any
sort, which determines in the picture the height of the
eye of the spectator; in an extended landscape, the
representation of the natural horizon corresponds with
this line.

Apparent horizon. See under Apparent.

Artificial horizon, a level mirror, as the surface of
mercury in a shallow vessel, or a plane reflector adjusted
to the true level artificially; -- used chiefly with the
sextant for observing the double altitude of a celestial

Celestial horizon. (Astron.) See def. 2, above.

Dip of the horizon (Astron.), the vertical angle between
the sensible horizon and a line to the visible horizon,
the latter always being below the former.

Rational horizon, and Sensible horizon. (Astron.) See
def. 2, above.

Visible horizon. See definitions 1 and 2, above.

Synonyms: apparent horizon, celestial horizon, purview, sensible horizon, skyline, view, visible horizon

See Also: ambit, compass, geological horizon, great circle, line, linear perspective, orbit, perspective, profile, range, reach, scope, soil horizon, stratum

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