Definition of excavation noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˌekskəˈveɪʃn//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˌekskəˈveɪʃn//
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  1. 1[countable, uncountable] the activity of digging in the ground to look for old buildings or objects that have been buried for a long time
  2. 2[countable, usually plural] a place where people are digging to look for old buildings or objects The excavations are open to the public.
  3. 3[uncountable] the act of digging, especially with a machine
  4. Word Originearly 17th cent.: from French, or from Latin excavatio(n-), from excavare ‘hollow out’, from ex- ‘out’ + cavare ‘make or become hollow’ (from cavus ‘hollow’).Extra examples Further archaeological excavations are now being carried out. Further excavations at the site are now being carried out. More discoveries were made as the excavation proceeded. The excavations took place between 1925 and 1939. recent excavations of underground burial chambers
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: excavation