Corsi Collection of Decorative Stones

view of stone 65

Corsi 65, approx. 145 x 73 x 40 mm, © Oxford University Museum of Natural History

OUMNH Number: 65  
Name and quarry location: Duke's red marble, from Newhaven, Derbyshire, England  
Geological description: Recrystallised limestone of Lower Carboniferous age, containing abundant hematitic (and occasional limonitic) capillary inclusions dispersed in colourless calcite.  
Comments: This is a very fine example of 'Duke's red marble', given to Corsi by William Cavendish, 6th Duke of Devonshire. The Chatsworth account books show that the Duke had shafts sunk at Newhaven for the newly discovered red marble in 1823, making Corsi's specimen one of the earliest examples of this marble still extant. Only small pieces were available, but it was a vibrant addition to the range of stones used by local craftsmen for decorative inlays in Ashford black marble. A red stone from Alport in Derbyshire used for inlays, and called Duke's red by Tomlinson and others, was according to Thomas (2008), solidified iron-rich sediments obtained from mine drainage channels.  
References: Brighton (1995); Corsi (1825) 38; Chats. Acc. (1823); Price (2007) 124; Thomas (2008) 30; Tomlinson (1996) 30  
Further information:

Corsi's classification: Class 1. Marbles; Section 1. Monochrome marbles; Species 5. Red marbles  
Corsi's text: 38.5 Rosso di Newhaven nell'Inghilterra  

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