Corsi Collection of Decorative Stones

view of stone 813

Corsi 813, approx. 145 x 73 x 40 mm, © Oxford University Museum of Natural History

OUMNH Number: 813  
Name and quarry location: Granito della Colonna, from Wadi Umm Shegilat, near Gebel Abu el-Hasan, Eastern Desert, Egypt  
Geological description: Coarse pegmatitic diorite, with large black prismatic crystals of hornblende.  
Comments: This distinctive very coarse-grained igneous rock is named after a small column in the chapel of Sant Zenone in the church of Santa Prassede in Rome, said to be that which Christ was chained to during his flagellation in Jerusalem. The stone is from the Precambrian basement rocks at Wadi Umm Shegilat. It is unusual in being sawn from the quarry in ancient Roman times rather than extracted with wedges.  
References: Borghini (1997) 220; Del Bufalo (2002); Harrell (2002c); Harrell (2010a); Lazzarini (2002c) 229-230; Mielsch (1985) 69, taf.23; Price (2007) 230  
Further information:

Corsi's classification: Class 16. Granites; i. Antique granite  
Corsi's text: 203.1 Granito antico. Marmor Syenite. Marmo Sienite... [trovata] presso la città di Siene sul confine fra Egitto, e l'Etiopia... Pyrrhopoecilon... Psaronion...Aethiopicum perchè... era Siene sul confine dell' Etiopia. Granito della Colonna.  

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