Francis HUGUET, Laboratoire Pléiade, Université Sorbonne Paris Nord, France
The Matterhorn, emblematic mountain and famous summit in the history of mountaineering is a well-characterized geomorphosite, presenting at the same time the central values - scientific interest (geomorphological and geological) and the additional valuers (aesthetic, cultural and economic). That remarkable geomorphosite can be analysed across several time scales:
- Deep time of Alpine tectonics, the place of the Matterhorn in Pennine thrust sheets (as evidenced by E. Argand in the beginning of the twentieth century)
- The time of Quaternary morphogenesis, the shaping of a "horn" by glacial erosion
- The melting of high mountain permafrost, in Anthropocenic time
- From Edward Whymper to Dani Arnold, the place of the Matterhorn, in the history of European mountaineering
A remarkable multi-scale geological and geeomorphological evolution explains the exceptional interest arisen by the Matterhorn since the middle of the nineteeth century, at the same time in the geoscientist community and in the general public and its emblematic value in Swiss economics and society.
Keywords: Matterhorn|geomorphosite|Mountaineering|Horn|Permafrost melting