A geologic and petrographic study was performed on a rich collection of statues made of stone exposed at the statuary of the Egyptian Museum of Turin (NW Italy) to enhance the value of this artistic heritage and set the basis for its best conservation. Magmatic and sedimentary rocks were recognized. Magmatic rocks with an intrusive origin are the most represented and include two main varieties: Red Granite, consisting of a sienogranite with porphyritic texture and pink to red K-feldspars, and Black Granite, which includes granodiorite, quartz diorite and tonalite lithotypes, whose colour ranges from grey to almost black. These magmatic rocks belong to the Arabian–Nubian shield, and the historical quarries are located near Aswan. The sedimentary rocks are represented by Cenozoic white limestones and red sandstones and Cretaceous dark-yellow Nubian sandstones. Finally, we note the occurrence of the so-called Bekhen Stone, originally attributed to a green-black metagreywacke belonging to the Hammamat series of late Precambrian age, outcropping in the central sector of the Eastern Desert, and re-interpreted here as a massive dark-green sandstone. This paper provides a scientific classification of the artefacts exposed in the statuary rooms based on the employed materials and contributes to the enhancement of the valuable collection of stone artefacts preserved in one of the leading ancient Egyptian Museums in the world.

The stones of the Statuary of the Egyptian Museum of Turin: geologic and petrographic characterization

BORGHI, Alessandro;ANGELICI, Debora;CASTELLI, Daniele Carlo Cesare;D'ATRI, Anna Raffaella;LO GIUDICE, Alessandro;MARTIRE, Luca;RE, ALESSANDRO;
2015-01-01

Abstract

A geologic and petrographic study was performed on a rich collection of statues made of stone exposed at the statuary of the Egyptian Museum of Turin (NW Italy) to enhance the value of this artistic heritage and set the basis for its best conservation. Magmatic and sedimentary rocks were recognized. Magmatic rocks with an intrusive origin are the most represented and include two main varieties: Red Granite, consisting of a sienogranite with porphyritic texture and pink to red K-feldspars, and Black Granite, which includes granodiorite, quartz diorite and tonalite lithotypes, whose colour ranges from grey to almost black. These magmatic rocks belong to the Arabian–Nubian shield, and the historical quarries are located near Aswan. The sedimentary rocks are represented by Cenozoic white limestones and red sandstones and Cretaceous dark-yellow Nubian sandstones. Finally, we note the occurrence of the so-called Bekhen Stone, originally attributed to a green-black metagreywacke belonging to the Hammamat series of late Precambrian age, outcropping in the central sector of the Eastern Desert, and re-interpreted here as a massive dark-green sandstone. This paper provides a scientific classification of the artefacts exposed in the statuary rooms based on the employed materials and contributes to the enhancement of the valuable collection of stone artefacts preserved in one of the leading ancient Egyptian Museums in the world.
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Applied petrography Cultural heritage Archaeometry Ancient Egyptians
Borghi, A.; Angelici, D.; Borla, M.; Castelli, D.; D’Atri, A.; Gariani, G.; Lo Giudice, A.; Martire, L.; Re, A.; Vaggelli, G.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2318/1521124
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