Corsi Collection of Decorative Stones

view of stone 461

Corsi 461, approx. 145 x 73 x 40 mm, © Oxford University Museum of Natural History

OUMNH Number: 461  
Name and quarry location: probably diaspro tenero di Sicilia, from Sicily, Italy; but may be breccia d'Arzo, from Ticino, Switzerland.  
Geological description: Polymict limestone breccia with variable amounts of orange iron-staining of micritic matrix.  
Comments: This specimen has been recognised as diaspro tenero from Sicily by its visual appearance and the same colours and intensity of fluorescence under shortwave ultraviolet light to the other Sicilian soft jaspers in the collection. However it is also markedly similar to the stone known variously as Predino broccatello (Cambridge University collection), Arzo breccia (Dubarry de Lasalle, 2000), and vecchia breccia from Arzo on the Swiss/Italian border. In the stone trade it is called macchiavecchia breccia, marmo macchiavecchia and macchiavecchia del Ticino. Dubarry de Lasalle records a very long history of working of this stone.  
References: Borch (1778) 130-161; Dubarry de Lassale (2000) 228-229; Dubarry de Lassale (2005) 290; Evangelista (1998); Montana (1998) 64-68; Price (2007) 150-151. Other examples: Unnumbered sample ex Percy Webb Ltd, in Cambridge University collection.  
Further information:

Corsi's classification: Class 1. Marbles; Section 5. Breccias; ii. Italian Breccias  
Corsi's text: 122.40 Breccia di Pavia  

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