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Layers of rock are deposited horizontally at the bottom of a lake (principle of original horizontality).
Younger layers are deposited on top of older layers (principle of superposition).
However, the age of each fossil primate needs to be determined so that fossils of the same age found in different parts of the world and fossils of different ages can be compared.
There are three general approaches that allow scientists to date geological materials and answer the question: "How old is this fossil?
Sometimes sedimentary rocks are disturbed by events, such as fault movements, that cut across layers after the rocks were deposited.