Six laws of relative dating
Your 3 layers will consist of a chocolate cake, a vanilla cake, and a cheesecake, because you're crazy and your cake doesn't have to conform to standards. On your plate, you put the chocolate cake on bottom, or the first layer. Then vanilla and cheesecake are the second and third oldest, respectively. Now that I've gotten you all hungry for cake and cookies let's talk about rocks instead.Now, because we've already established that this cake is pure insanity, you're going to cut out a big hole in the middle that pierces all 3 layers and stick in some new feature. This exact same concept can be applied to layers of rock underneath the surface.Examples include fractures, faults, and igneous intrusions.
Relative dating not only determines which layers are older or younger, but also gives insight into the paleoenvironments that formed the particular sequence of rock.
Steno formalized the laws of superposition, original horizontality, original continuity and inclusions in his publication entitled states that any inclusion is older than the rock that contains it.
Steno's idea that fossils are older than the rock in which they are found hints at this principle, but Hutton is most often given credit for this principle.states that fossil organisms succeed one another in a definite, irreversible, and determinable order.
Although there might be some mineral differences due to the difference in source rock, most sedimentary rock deposited year after year look very similar to one another.
This means that a quartz sandstone deposited 500 million years ago will look very similar to a quartz sandstone deposited 50 years ago.