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Subject: Buried metal

Buried metal

From: Carolyn Riccardelli <riccardelli>
Date: Thursday, June 1, 2006
In Conservation DistList Instance: 18:7 Tuesday, July 13, 2004 Jack
Ogden <jack [at] striptwist__com> writes

>There are sometimes minute, very fragile meandering tubes on ancient
>buried metal objects that I have always thought of as 'worm casts'
>(though that might not be the right term). They are, presumably, a
>good sign of authenticity (they are small and very fragile and
>follow the topography of the object/corrosion). Does anyone know of
>any research that has been done on these?

In 1990, David Scott and Jerry Podany published the article "Ancient
copper alloys: some metallurgical and technological studies of Greek
and Roman bronzes" in Small bronze sculpture from the ancient world:
papers delivered at a symposium. Published by the Getty Museum.

In this work they describe fibrous crystals on bronze; they were
found to be Malachite. Perhaps this chapter might help you identify
the "worm tubes" on your artifact.

Carolyn Riccardelli
Metropolitan Museum of Art


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                  Conservation DistList Instance 19:59
                 Distributed: Wednesday, June 14, 2006
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Received on Thursday, 1 June, 2006

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