Gondwana, and Gondwanaland or rare Gondwania called the southern super continent that existed in the Southern Hemisphere during most of the known geological history. He had a stretch of about 73 million square kilometers in the Permian.
Formed at least twice along with the more northern Gondwana continental blocks a Laurasia supercontinent:
The Late Archaic supercontinent Kenorland 2500 mya applies stratigraphically as not secured.
The super continent was in the Erdfrühzeit ( Precambrian) through collision of East and West Gondwana - fragments Rodinias - mya during the Pan-African orogeny 600. After it was a long time grouped around the South Pole around, it joined in the early Carboniferous ( about 360 mya ) in the wake of a strong movement towards the north with the former North American- Scandinavian continent Laurussia and the Kraton Asia to the total continent Pangaea. The connection of Gondwana with North America lasted until about 180 mya to (Jura). Then Gondwana was an independent United Continent, which, however, about 150 mya began to break his hand ( towards the end of the Jurassic ) again, first. Between Africa and Madagascar, most recently between Australia and Antarctica
After the breakup of Gondwana - a fragment of Pangaea - about 100 mya Africa crashed in the wake of continental drift on Europe, which the Alps aufwölbte, while the impact of India on Asia Paleogene gave rise to the Himalayas and leaves. This process is called Alpidic recent orogeny.
1861 was proposed by the Austrian geologist Eduard Suess for the supercontinent Gondwana, the name. The name comes from the region of Gondwana in central India (from Sanskrit gondavana "Land of the Gonds ", according to the Indian people ).
The adjective gondwana used in biogeography to describe patterns of distribution of living organisms, the now spatially separated regions only occur in two or more part of Gondwana were once, including restricted Antarctic flora. For example, the family of the silver tree plants only in southern South America, South Africa and Australia is known, it is therefore " gondwana - distributed ."