In paleogeography, Gondwana /ɡɒndˈwɑːnə/, also Gondwanaland, is the name given to the more southerly of two supercontinents (the other being Laurasia) that were part of the Pangaea supercontinent that existed from approximately 300 to 180 million years ago (Mya). Gondwana formed prior to Pangaea, then became part of Pangaea, and finally broke up after the breakup of Pangaea. Gondwana is believed to have sutured between about 570 and 510 Mya, thus joining East Gondwana to West Gondwana. It separated from Laurasia 200-180 Mya (the mid-Mesozoic era) during the breakup of Pangaea, drifting farther south after the split.
Gondwana included most of the landmasses in today's Southern Hemisphere, including Antarctica, South America, Africa, Madagascar, and the Australian continent, as well as the Arabian Peninsula and the Indian Subcontinent, which have now moved entirely into the Northern Hemisphere.
The continent of Gondwana was named by Austrian scientist Eduard Suess, after the Gondwana region of central northern India (from Sanskrit gondavana "forest of the Gonds". The name had been used in a geological context, first by H.B. Medlicott in 1872. from which the Gondwana sedimentary sequences (Permian-Triassic) are also described.
The adjective "Gondwanan" is in common use in biogeography when referring to patterns of distribution of living organisms, typically when the organisms are restricted to two or more of the now-discontinuous regions that were once part of Gondwana, including the Antarctic flora. For example, the Proteaceae family of plants known only from southern South America, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand is considered to have a "Gondwanan distribution". This pattern is often considered to indicate an archaic, or relict, lineage.(Wikipedia)