Where would you have lived 200 million years ago? And will your descendants in Los Angeles or Bangkok live in Amasia instead of Asia or North America?
Maybe you’ve heard of Pangaea – the theoretical supercontinent that existed 200–300 million years ago and consisted of all the landmasses pushed together. Coined by Alfred Wegener in 1927, “Pangaea“ means “entire earth” in Greek. Wegener’s theory of continental drift also suggested that Pangaea split into two sub-supercontinents, Gondwana and Laurasia. No, he wasn’t making these words up off the top of his head. Gondwana comes from Sanskrit meaning “forest of the Indians” and refers to the landmasses that became South America, Africa, Australia and Antarctica. Laurasia became North America, Asia and Europe. The word Laurasia came from the name of the core of North America (Laurentia) and Eurasia.
The earth, though, hasn’t stopped moving. Geologists at Yale University predict that Asia and North America will join near the North Pole. Don’t worry – this will not happen in the foreseeable future. Continental drift is slow and steady, and the scientists say this particular shift will occur in 50–200 million years. They are proposing to call this future supercontinent “Amasia”. Learn more at the BBC.
What are continents made of? Cratons are the core of continents. They are the oldest and sturdiest part of landmasses, and their roots (yes, rocks have roots) descend many miles into the Earth’s crust.
How are continents defined? In World Geography, we learned about the seven continents of the world: Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, Antarctica, North America and South America. Some geologists quibble with the notion that there are seven continents. Perhaps Europe and Asia should actually be one continent (called Eurasia), or others claim, North and South America technically make one continent. However, those are not the prevailing beliefs. The word continent comes from the land phrase, “terra continens,” which meant “continuous land.” Continēnt literally meant “holding together.”
The names of the continents are contentious. Etymologists still haven’t pinned down the particular root for the word “Europe.” It shows up in Greek mythology in the form of a woman, Europa, who seduced Zeus, but its exact origin is uncertain. It has referred to what we know of as Europe, though, for a very long time. The word Asia comes from the Akkadian word “asus” which meant “to go out, to rise” in reference to the sun. So, Asia technically meant “the land where the sunrises.” From the perspective of Europe, Asia is in the direction of where the sun rises. Africa comes from the Latin name, Afri, which referred to people who lived in North Africa. It is unclear what “afri” meant.” Learn how the Americas were named here.
Australia and Antarctica both refer to the geographic positions of the continents in relation to Europe. Australia is derived from the Latin word australis, which meant “southern.” Antarctica simply means “opposite of the Arctic.”
How did the Yellow, Black and Red Seas get their names? Find out here.
Do you have a better name for the future continent? What is it?
I think a better name for the continent would be either Inauterra (pronounced: in+ow+tear+uh) or Inauger(pronounced: in+ow+g+air) (Inaugera maybe, the -a doesn’t mean anything, it is simply for sound purposes) or Futerra (pronounced: foo+tear+uh).
Inauterra: inauditus (unheard (of ), new) + terra (I think we all know this one)
Inauterra essentially would mean: a land unheard of OR a land unknown to us.
Inauger(a): inauditus (unheard (of ), new) + ager (farm LAND).
Inauger would essentially have the same meaning as Inauterra, but with a different sound to it… personally, I think Inauterra sounds better.
Futerra: futura (things about to be, really just meaning future) + terra
Futerra would basically mean: a land to be, OR a land about to be (born).
Amasia is a cool name.
What about Asierica (pronounced ə-zhĕr’-ĭ-kə)? <— I kinda like that more.
Amersia, its pretty
Imagine that. Amasia. We could actually dig a hole to China.
Well, not us. I mean our future generations.
Fascinating in terms of knowledge. Could be useful for writing a fairytale that transcends timeframe of history. Interesting!
There are other possible future supercontinents, as Neopangaea (a.k.a. Pangaea Ultima or Pangaea Proxima) and Novopangaea.
Awesome article.Have read these when I was a kid.Now almost after a decade I m reading this.Its realy exhilarating to know about such things which exists and is unnoticed in daily life.
Panderelectis nuclearis may not be a better name but it is a sure thing that human beings intend to turn the world into it.
ACTUALLY, the question is moot…
Los Angeles will be dust in 50 million years.
Really interesting article… Cant believe I’m the first to comment on this )
Good article but I cannot agree at one point.
Every articles about it make the same mistake. Wrong interpretation of the science studies. The Earth’s surface was been equal at the sum of the continents, nowadays split. This mean that the Earth was smaller than today, and in the future will be bigger adding more surface under the oceans. This is for from the big energy kept inside in the Earth’s core. It.s such as a balloon with inside steam.
I like Charles’ “Asierica.” Or how about: Aquilonamerasia (uh-kee-luh-nuh-mair-zhah) or Borasierica (bor-uh-zhair-ih-kuh)? (“Aquilonem” and “boreas” are Latin words referring to “north.”)
Amit, you are on to something. This could be a whole new fantasy genre. It could be called “neopangaea fantasy.”
Side note: I do not mean to be a downer because this is a really fun topic, but am I the only one who is skeptical about what scientists say? I am not that old, but already I have heard scientific experts go back and forth on so many things.
And so much of what is talked about are theories; however, these theories are heard often enough that despite their status as theories (e.g., theory of evolution, big bang theory, the theoretical supercontinent of Pangaea), they seem to become so engrained in our minds through repetition that we forget that they are just theories: “a speculative or conjectural view or idea.”
Perhaps I woke up on the wrong side of the bed today. Or maybe it was that article I read about global warming…er…I mean climate change (a more adaptable term should things not turn out exactly how they thought).
How about Amnesia?
[...] ‘Pangaea’, Pandowdy, Pangloss — In Montana they raise Dental Floss — Theoretically some Hypothesis of Gaia, — Not in sync with some Calendar of Maya — We have Free Will — To change things Still — We am what we see AmEuthanasia? –>>L.T.Rhyme [...]
im going to say the name is amerasanafrier
im meant amerasanafriers
Intersting article. Enjoyed it very much. Thank you.
Feel extremely excited on reading today’s article and w/ reason I hope which is as follows:
Now there is a suggestion that the term Asia means the land where sun rises. I thought that too. B4. Not now. Why not! Well b4 the beginning of time when, say hypothetically, our foreparents began to walk to move eastward they went after light (The source of LIGHT–sun is the source; they thought they would get that, LIGHT, as if for 24hours a day. So why not go for it–the light.
However, later as I thought more… something made me think that possibly (not as romantic as above) Asia could mean NOT SEA. A=not (b/c this a/A comes b4 a consonat S, it is A &/+ SIA. Or… A=NOT +Sia=Sea. Altogether the term Asia becomes NOT SEA. Sea is where water and opposite of sea is land or landmass. Forgive me I am not that educated &/or such to arriculate properly. Also Eng is not my first lang. Haowver thought I let you know what I thought about Asia; this belief is still in my system
Amasia is extremely nice, soft sounding name and it is well thought as it looks from its roots: America & Asia. No new name can beat it. Like it very much.
@Vex: Very gd point. Anything, everything will be moot….@ onetime or another, yet still not yet, so why not let’s make it a worthwhile & spice it up & have fun.
@Nikhil Thakur: Your comment, ” …first to comment on this”. Is it?! Now I doubt if mine will be here/there @ all or disappear like CAMPHOR!!!
I agree with Ptron – fun topic but I hope no one accepts these “theories” as fact without questioning it. The very first axiom is that the map was 200-300 million yrs ago – of course the person who proposed it was not there at the time, it is an assumption out of which grows this “reality”.
On that note I profer my reality: If there was going to be a new supercontinent it would be called “Tekken”!!
Valerio, the inflating Earth theory was popped almost a hundred years ago.
In addition, to the plates moving between North America and Far-East Asia, they’re moving apart in the Atlantic – eventually a new landmass will emerge. Also (Maybe unfortunately) the British peninsula is moving towards Europe (Literally, not metaphorically) and so might rejoin. It’s a bit of a downer that we’ll lose one of our greatest distinctions and defences – being an island.
It’s really funny how there’s always someone who says something like, “First comment, yippee!” but then is really the third or fourth comment. It’s really funny how Earth’s continents are always moving… Like they can’t figure out where they want to be.
“amasia” – sounds like “amaze ya!” whoohoo!!
Amasia in Spanish means female concubine, lover, etc. Don’t forget English only speaking people, there are more languages than English.
Pan in greek means “all”, gaia (gea) “earth”. Pangea, all the earth.
Ptron, all of them are hypothesis. Science requires for a proven phenomenom under controlled conditions to be a theory.
‘So, Asia technically meant “the land where the sunrises.”’
Perhaps I’m wrong, but shouldn’t that be ‘where the sun rises’? That is, with a space between sun and rises?
In 50 million years, language will probably transcend letters and phonetics. We will be a species of mind readers with no written records of history. So the resulting continent will probably be called..(insert thought here)….:)
I think they have the name of what they call Gondwana wrong. It is actually called Gondwana Land. The original place called Gondwana is in India.
One thing I’m curious about is in my opinion, before all this happens, Alaska and Russia look like they will collide, maybe not. I’m wondering what will happen to the land itself. Will it crumble or become a mountain range of some kind? So before we name the new continent, we might need to name the new mountains. Of course, one tectonic plate could get pushed up over the other one, in that case, a ton of earthquakes are gonna happen.
just call everything America
WHATE IS THISH HOW R U
Gilgamesh you make an excellent point. They should remember that there are other languages.Just a tiny thing. Amasia and concubine are not the same thing. Concubine is when two people, not married, are living together but there in no legal impediment for them to marry each other. The “amasiato” is when two people living together cannot get married because one or both of them are still legally married to someone else.
Aside that, I still don’t like this name, it reminds me of another spanish word: “amasar”, like working with dough, I like Amerisia or Ameria better Though I’m happy I won’t be here when that happens, I like things to stay the way they are. Yes, even continents haha.. =D
The term theory has a different meaning in science than in standard speech. A scientific theory is not just a speculative idea. A scientific theory begins as a hypothesis, and must undergo research and peer-review before being considered a theory. The scientific method requires scientists to make every effort to disprove a hypothesis before accepting it as theory.
It is also inaccurate to say they are “just theories”. Evolution, for example, is an observed phenomenon. The “theory of evolution by means of natural selection” merely attempts to explain the process that drives evolution.
As for scientists “going back and forth”, that is usually a case of bad journalism. Many of the people reporting on these subjects either don’t understand the subject matter or are simply twisting the facts to fit their own political agenda. If you look at actual scientific literature, you’ll find that scientist rarely make the bold and definitive claims that we so often see in the media.
@Ptron: A scientific theory is much different than a lay theory (a guess). In order for an idea to become a theory, in science, it has to undergo the scientific method where it is proposed as a hypotheses and tested for accuracy through observations and experiments. Once it is verified, it is a theory. On the other hand, a scientific law, is a statement that explains something under all conditions (i.e. real gas law, law of thermodynamics, Newton’s law’s of motion). These laws are how we as scientists and people govern the properties of the world.
Theories are unique in science because they have been proven to be true. It takes much effort, testing, and evaluation, to produce a theory. One can argue both sides of evolution ( and I do not want to incite further controversy because that is another topic) but it is a fact.
I’m simply stating that a scientific theory holds more truth and validity than ‘theory’ implies, and to any nonscientific person, it is commonly misunderstood and degraded because of lack of understanding of the real practice and process.
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Funny, isn’t it? If I think a ‘Hot Word’ subject is interesting, someone will post “Boring”; if I think it dull, someone will post “Fascinating”. Good! Vive la difference!
Of course, someone else will change the subject to another religious rant. (Oops, I’ve done just that! Many apologies.)
Hee hee! This is soo cool! I like Futerra as its name!
let’s call it “Chuck Norris”!!!!!!!!!!!
What about “Neolaurasia” or “Novolaurasia”? I’ve always thought “Laurasia” and “Laurentia” are awesome names, and since Eurasia never really separated, wouldn’t it make sense to say that this the new iteration of the old continent?
Personally, “Laurentia” seems to be a better name for North America anyways, since it refers specifically to the continental shield, and not to simply “Land Discovered by Amerigo Vespucci,” which isn’t completely true anyways. Yes, I know the term refers indirectly to St. Lawrence; but unlike the term “America,” which applies across geologic regions, “Laurentia” really doesn’t have any other land to confuse it with.
@ gilgamesh sheesh nerd
Amasia means amazon and asia add together, amazon is at the wast and asia is at the east, add together equal Pangea.
Manila and Dethanos, thanks for the elucidation. Good to know! Always good to hear from scientists in the public sphere.
IMHO, this discussion is moot. In 50 million years, the entire flora and fauna of the earth will be new and we won’t be here in our current form. From a biological standpoint, every child born has between 100 and 300 new errors in their genome that their parents did not have. Eventually, these accumulating errors won’t lead to a new race, but a dead one. From a Christian standpoint, Christ will return LONG before our descendants are no longer able to bear healthy offspring. The all the phyla on the earth (including underground, in the oceans, and in the air) will be reborn new and we will have bodies which never age, never get sick, and never die.
A new super-continent… Maybe. Relevant? Uh, not.
I say we leave this world, today, better than we found it (to the extent of our abilities).
we wont exist at that time eart resources will be depleted and we are to tranfer to other planet or maybe hit by a comet I hope not but hte name amereusia hehe sound like russia isnt it hehe
I LOVE MA MR. WRONG
yes i know where am i going??????????in heaven!!!!!!!!!!!
2 words that would be the perfect name for all this…………….Terra Nova. You heard me
Where will L.A. be? At the bottom of the Pacific.
Here on what are known as the Granitic Islands of the Seychelles (check a map; about 1,000 kilometres off Kenya in the Indian Ocean) we are living on slivers of granite that would have been in the middle of Gondwanaland before India and Africa parted company. I love it that when you look at a world map, Africa and India so obviously were once one. As for a name for a new supercontinent, couldn’t be arsed.
Ryan, of “yes i know where am i going??????????in heaven!!!!!!!!!!!:
Well done. But keep it to yourself, mate. You’ll frighten people on here.
Never gonna happen Cu’s there was no evolution, thus no PANGAEA! Just because someone has a degree in science doesn’t mean they can say whatever and expect us 2 believe it. God is real!
God is real Pangaea ain’t
you are so not good fight you are go away.
@oniya no you go away ugly person
I don’t think that it will have a name. Think about it. Humans may be abundant now, but we’re destroying the world. We’re polluting ourselves to death. We might be extinct in 50-200 million years.
What does God have to do with this? They never said he ISN’T real!
@ lando lol
Yeah in 50 million years L.A. will be sand in the bottom of the ocean lol..
@Socrates: HAHAHAHAHA Amnesia! LOL
Actually, I’d call it Continent Earth.
I LOVE Asia, so exotic! I don’t think America + Asia = A very good match because they are so different! Asia, exotic and unusual, America, beautiful, but not very unusual or exotic… Again, even with Amasia there will be the rest of America and Asia which are not touching, so… I guess it won’t be that different… Yep.