Gloucestershire White Gypsum Alabaster


Gloucestershire White Gypsum Alabaster

Size, 13cm x 8cm x 3.5cm  Weight, 276gm

Ref No, 2061



Gloucestershire White Gypsum Alabaster, 13cm x 8cm x 3.5cm  Weight, 276gm

This piece of Gloucestershire White Gypsum Alabaster is from Aust, Southern Gloucestershire. Alabaster (calcium sulphate) from this location is an attractive  fine grained variety . This specimen has attractive contrasting veins running through it and is translucent when held up to the light. Like most specimens that come from this beach, the sea has gently softened some of the edges. This makes it both tactile and a fine display piece or alternatively if used for its healing properties. Alabaster is a crystalline form of Gypsum, a hydrous sulphate of calcium. It is classified as an evaporite mineral, that was created by the evaporation of saline lakes, leaving the gypsum behind to solidify, millions of years ago. This white Alabaster from Gloucestershire together with the nodular pink alabaster from Somerset makes the Severn estuary a fascinating area for both minerals and also fossils. Pieces of Alabaster have traditionally been popular with sculptors, because of its fine grains the gypsum is easy to polish. It is a softer and also more easily workable alternative and substitute for marble.

Alabaster gets its name from the Greek word ‘alabaster’s‘. The ancient Greeks and Romans also regarded this as an important mineral for carving and used it for making storage and drinking vessels. When relatively thin, alabaster is sufficiently translucent enough to let the light through. These days the largest workable deposits of Alabaster are in the Ebro Valley in Aragon, Spain.

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