Other influential applications of stratigraphy in the early 19th century were by Georges Cuvier and Alexandre Brongniart, who studied the geology of the region around Paris.
Variation in rock units, most obviously displayed as visible layering, is due to physical contrasts in rock type (lithology).
The Sphinx is carved from the natural limestone of the Giza Plateau known as the Mokkatam Formation.
An Eocene-period sea retreated 50 million years ago, leaving an embankment that became the north-northwest part of the Giza Plateau.
As the sea receded, a shallow lagoon formed above a shoal and coral reef in what is now the south-southeast part of the Plateau.
Over millions of years, carbonate mud petrified to become the layers from which the pyramid builders quarried limestone blocks and from which they carved the Sphinx. The lowest stratum of the statue is the hard, brittle rock of the ancient reef, Member I.
Chronological Analysis of the Scriptures- Literal interpretation of the scriptures led some people to conclude that the Earth was created approximately 6,000 years old.
In fact, Archbishop Usher of Ireland calculated that the Earth was created at 9 AM on It was believed that prior to the Great Flood, Earths surface was flat and its climate was mild.
One popular theory about an older age for the Sphinx states that an Old Kingdom tomb cut from the “exact same layers as the Sphinx” shows a pattern of weathering that is different than that of the Sphinx quarry walls.The first practical large-scale application of stratigraphy was by William Smith in the 1790s and early 19th century.Known as the "Father of English geology", Smith recognized the significance of strata or rock layering and the importance of fossil markers for correlating strata; he created the first geologic map of England.The quantitative approach is admirable, but Buffon's assumptions are flawed. Silicate minerals have lower heat conductivity than steels and are better insulators leading to slower cooling rates.Second, the calculations did not incorporate the heating effects of radioactive decay.Mountains, erosion, and variations in climate were considered to be punishment for the sins committed by humanity.