" First, the relative age of a fossil can be determined.Relative dating puts geologic events in chronological order without requiring that a specific numerical age be assigned to each event.Layers that cut across other layers are younger than the layers they cut through (principle of cross-cutting relationships).
This is the principle of cross-cutting relationships.
This is the principle of original horizontality: layers of strata are deposited horizontally or nearly horizontally (Figure 2).
Thus, any deformations of strata (Figures 2 and 3) must have occurred after the rock was deposited.
A fossil can be studied to determine what kind of organism it represents, how the organism lived, and how it was preserved.
However, by itself a fossil has little meaning unless it is placed within some context.