The Isotopic signature of classical marbles (Monografia o trattato scientifico)

  • The Isotopic signature of classical marbles (Monografia o trattato scientifico) (literal)
  • 2006-01-01T00:00:00+01:00 (literal)
Alternative label
  • Donato Attanasio; Mauro Brilli; Neil Ogle (2006)
    The Isotopic signature of classical marbles
    L'Erma di Bretschneider, Roma (Italia), 2006
  • Donato Attanasio; Mauro Brilli; Neil Ogle (literal)
  • Roma (literal)
  • ISBN: 88-8265-378-1 (literal)
  • Istituto di Struttura della Materia; Istituto di Geologia Ambientale e Geoingegneria; Queens University (Belfast, UK) (literal)
  • The Isotopic signature of classical marbles (literal)
  • 88-8265-378-1 (literal)
  • The determination of carbon and oxygen stable isotope ratios is one of the many geological and physico-chemical techniques developed for determining the origin of marble. For many thousand years white, but also coloured marbles have been the noble material par excellence of the plastic arts and architecture. This was most successfully exploited in the Graeco-Roman world and we commonly associate the idea of extensive marble usage with classical antiquity and particularly the Roman Imperial period. Marble, however, has been a highly prized material for the arts also in other historical periods, among which Italian Renaissance is a most celebrated example. Interest in the field has gone far beyond the pure art-historical, stylistic approach to the artworks and now involves many different aspects of the marble problem. Scholars from various disciplines have been investigating specific questions ranging from the social and economic organisation indispensable for large scale exploitation, to the unsurpassed skill and technological competence exhibited by marble craftsmen in the antiquity Nowadays in-depth scientific knowledge of the properties and provenance of marble materials has become an indispensable tool for classical archaeology and art history. Identifying the quarries of origin of marble is essential in order to answer a number of important questions, such as the range of commercial relationships and trade routes that were pursued in antiquity; the changing tastes for specific varieties and artistic styles, and the level of technological skill that was achieved through the use of certain types. In addition, such marble studies contribute to the identification of copies, forgeries and later restorations and are a necessary pre-requisite in the planning of conservation and restoration work. This study is intended primarily to provide the archaeological, art-historical community with the experimental data and the expertise indispensable for using isotopic analysis, probably the most widespread analytical technique developed so far for determining the places of origin of ancient white marbles, on a routine basis. (literal)
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