Encyclopedia of Coastal Science

Living Edition
| Editors: Charles W. Finkl, Christopher Makowski


  • George MustoeEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-48657-4_309-2

Originally used to describe unusual weathering features found in Corsica, tafone (or tafoni, plural) has become established as the generic name for a type of cavernous weathering characterized by the existence of hollows or cavities that range in size from a few centimeters to a meter or more in diameter. Depth is variable, the cavities commonly being nearly hemispherical. The shape and orientation are strongly influenced by the rock fabric, causing the hollows to be elongated in the direction of foliation of bedding planes. Coalescence of the cavities produces mushroomlike shapes, natural arches, and other unusual sculptured forms. Eventually the outcrop surface may be destroyed by this process of expansion. When numerous small cavities occur, the resulting spongelike texture is termed honeycomb weathering. Both honeycomb weathering and tafone may occur independently, but often the two forms coexist and seem to originate from a similar process. Tafone occurs commonly in granitic...

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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geology, MS 9080Western Washington UniversityBellinghamUSA