Plutonic theory is the geologic theory proposed by James Hutton around the turn of the 19th century that volcanic activity was the source of rocks on the surface of the Earth. It was named for Pluto, the ancient Roman god of the underworld. This replaced Abraham Werner's Neptunism theory, which claimed that rocks had originated from a great flood and were basically sedimentary in origin.

Both Plutonism and Neptunism were somewhat extreme positions. Today, rocks and minerals of the surface are considered to be of both igneous and sedimentary, as well as metamorphic origin.


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