Acording to britanica.com:

sedimentary rock, rock formed at or near Earth’s surface by the accumulation and lithification of sediment (detrital rock) or by the precipitation from solution at normal surface temperatures (chemical rock).

My question is, as carbonated deposits on caves are formed by chemical precipitation, does that mean a deposit of stalactites is a sedimentary deposit?

Or perhaps it is a supergenic deposit?

  • $\begingroup$ I always regarded stalactites & stalagmites as accretions. $\endgroup$
    – Fred
    Nov 10, 2021 at 16:07

1 Answer 1


Stalactites are sedimentary deposits though they form by supergenic-like processes. Importantly, the layers within contain historical information about environmental surface conditions. By contrast, a supergenic deposit is the result of remineralization and concentration of one mineral into another, different mineral; more ultra low-grade chemical metamorphism than sedimentary.


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