Share this entry
hornfels Line breaks: horn|fels
Pronunciation: /ˈhɔːnfɛlz/

Definition of hornfels in English:


[mass noun]
A dark, fine-grained metamorphic rock consisting largely of quartz, mica, and particular feldspars.
Example sentences
  • The slate, where thermally metamorphosed, has been turned into siliceous hornfels and mica schist.
  • As a result, contact metamorphic minerals grow in random interlocking patterns giving rise to hornfels, a tough rock with no direction along which it will split preferentially.
  • These are actually pseudomorphs of sericite (a fine-grained white mica) after cordierite and are found included in hornfels or slate as a product of contact metamorphism.


Mid 19th century: from German, literally 'horn rock'.

Definition of hornfels in:
Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources