Corsi Collection of Decorative Stones

view of stone 373

Corsi 373, approx. 145 x 73 x 40 mm, © Oxford University Museum of Natural History

side view of stone 373

side view of stone 373, approx. 145 x 73 x 40 mm, © Oxford University Museum of Natural History

OUMNH Number: 373  
Name and quarry location: Derbyshire rosewood marble, from Nettler Dale, near Ashford, Derbyshire, England  
Geological description: Limestone; a Carboniferous laminated algal biomicrite. Note synsedimentary brecciation of algal laminites.  
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 parallel to the bedding so the lamination is seen on the sides of the specimen. 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 from 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: Watson (1916) 16  
Further information:

Corsi's classification: Class 1. Marbles; Section 4. Concretionary marbles; Species 1. Alabasters; ii. Italian alabasters  
Corsi's text: 103.40 Altro [Alabastro di Ashford in Inghilterra]  

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