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1. The study of the events and processes, such as burial in sediment, transportation, and decomposition, that affect the remains of an organism after it dies.
2. These events and processes, especially those leading up to preservation or fossilization.
[Greek taphē, grave + -nomy.]
taph′o·nom′ic (tăf′ə-nŏm′ĭk) adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
a specialist in taphonomy
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014