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Abstract

Structural geology was a popular field of research in 1888 and has remained so ever since. During the entire ensuing interval, workers in this field have been numerous, and the more important results of their work have been adequately published and are now well known to nearly all students of the earth sciences. To compile a history of these researches and publications would therefore be easy enough if there were any way to avoid the necessity of making critical judgments. As soon as the historian decides to do so simple a thing as to omit some researches from consideration, however, he is likely to find that to a sizable group of his peers he will seem to be slighting the only phase of structural geology with a valid claim to be considered truly scientific.

The degree to which different structural geologists differ in their interests is in fact extreme. One of them may be primarily a student of applied mechanics, interested in structural problems merely as puzzles upon which to direct the methods of the calculus; another may be at heart a seismologist or a geophysicist of some other variety, interested chiefly in such vague indications as exist with regard to the deep interior of the earth; a third may approach the subject from the side of paleogeography or even of paleontology; and a few are said to be interested almost solely in finding out exact details about the surface structures of the earth and in plotting them on maps and sections so as to display their relations to the structure of adjacent areas.

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