A variety of porous, soft volcanic stone that is common in Italy. Tufa was used extensively for temples, tombs and walls in Etruscan and Republican Roman times. The Early Christian catacombs outside Rome were excavated primarily through tufa bedrock. (Note: archaeological publications in English generally refer to this volcanic stone as “tufa”, but the correct geological term in English is “tuff” and in Italian “tufo”).
Etruscan tufa masonry from the Banditaccia necropolis, Cerveteri, Italy.