Corsi Collection of Decorative Stones

view of stone 567

Corsi 567, approx. 145 x 73 x 40 mm, © Oxford University Museum of Natural History

OUMNH Number: 567  
Name and quarry location: Serpentina verde ranocchia, from Wadi Umm Esh, Wadi Atalla region, Eastern Desert, Egypt; or a variety of verde di Polcevera, from Pietra Lavazzara, Genoa, Liguria, Italy  
Geological description: Strongly sheared and serpentinised ultramafic rock with abundant granular patches and veinlets of black oxide minerals within the serpentine. Later veinlets of yellow serpentine cut the rock in sub-linear arrays.  
Comments: This is not the verde ranocchia of modern writers. It may be an atypical serpentinite from the Precambrian basement rocks near Wadi Umm Esh in the Wadi Atalla region, Eastern Desert, Egypt. Alternatively it may be from the Genoa region, Liguria, Italy and indeed it resembles a variety of marmo verde di Polcevera quarried at Pietralavezzara in the Val Polcevera which was seen in the Naturhistorisches Museum Wien. Jervis (1889) says this locality was formerly called Larvego.  
References: Borghini (1997) 291; Corsi (1845) 157-159; Jervis (1862) 26-28; Jervis (1889) 253-254; Harrell (2010a); Price (2007) 177  
Further information:

Corsi's classification: Class 7. Serpentines; i. Noble serpentines  
Corsi's text: 143.3 Verde ranocchia. Marmor ophite. Ofite... Plinio l'assegnò all' Egitto, ma Lucano con maggior precisione dice che si trovata nel Territorio di Tebe.  

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