Corsi Collection of Decorative Stones

view of stone 372

Corsi 372, approx. 145 x 73 x 40 mm, © Oxford University Museum of Natural History

OUMNH Number: 372  
Name and quarry location: Derbyshire rosewood marble, from Nettler Dale, near Ashford, Derbyshire, England  
Geological description: Limestone; a Carboniferous laminated algal biomicrite.  
Comments: This is a fine block of Derbyshire rosewood marble, given to Corsi by the 6th Duke of Devonshire following the Duke's visit to see Corsi's collection. It is cut perpendicular to the bedding and showing the characteristic lamination. According to Watson (1916) it was obtained from the 'Ashford Dale Quarries, Bakewell, Derbyshire, England - ...discovered...1831 on the estate of the Duke of Devonshire, near Ashford.' However, it must have been discovered at an earlier date for it to be in this collection. Trevor Ford (pers.comm.) give the source as Nettler Dale. Rosewood marble was used extensively in Derbyshire (and perhaps Devon) marble inlay workshops during the 19th and 20th centuries. It is sometimes confused with 'oakstone' a brown stalactitic baryte (barium sulphate) obtained at Arborlow in Derbyshire, and also used for inlay work, but the latter is a more golden brown colour and has bands of very even width.  
References: Price (2007) 104; Watson (1916) 16  
Further information:

Corsi's classification: Class 1. Marbles; Section 4. Concretionary marbles; Species 1. Alabasters; ii. Italian alabasters  
Corsi's text: 103.39 Alabastro di Ashford in Inghilterra  

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