Definition of Villafranchian in English:



  • 1Relating to or denoting an age (or stage) in Europe crossing the boundary of the Upper Pliocene and Lower Pleistocene, lasting from about 3 to 1 million years ago.

    • ‘In the early Villafranchian age we still see Ursus minimus around, although he has changed a bit.’
    • ‘The carnivore fauna demonstrates the typical middle Villafranchian association with Homotherium crenatidens, Pliocrocuta perrieri and Nyctereutes megamastoides.’
    • ‘The Poggio Rosso fauna, yet to be paleontologically determined, and the other late Villafranchian faunas collected in the Upper Valdarno from the Montevarchi complex fit a similar time span.’
    • ‘The medium-height terrace of La Nerthe contains a smaller amount of of Villafranchian pebbles.’
    • ‘Perhaps the best collection of these Villafranchian animals is contained in the Museum of Geology and Paleontology, a branch of the Florence Museum of Natural History.’
    1. 1.1The Villafranchian age or stage, or the system of deposits laid down during it.


Late 19th century: from French villafranchien, from Villafranca d'Asti, the village in northern Italy near which exposures of this period occur.