Fall, 24.5.1886

Chondrite H5
Fragments in a glass vial 2g

Remarks: ex Museo civico di storia naturale, Milano

On 24 May 1886, at 7 a.m., the sky being clear, a single stone weighing 1795 g fell in a cornfield at Tordandrea, 7.5 km southwest of Assisi (Perugia Province). Three peasants were present and immediately unearthed the meteorite. It was at a depth of about 60 cm, in an apparently vertical hole about 25 cm in diameter. The stone was 13.8 cm long, 12.8 cm wide. The fall was first described by Bellucci (1887), who submitted the individual specimen to a macroscopic examination. In the same year the complete meteorite was sent by Bellucci to Vienna, where L. Eger made a cast of the stone and sawed the meteorite in several pieces. Museums and private collectors later purchased the fragments.

The principal minerals in the Assisi meteorite are forsterite (Fa17.9±0.3) and enstatite (Fs16.0±0.3). Nickel-iron, troilite, and chromite were also identified. Yellowish brown limonitic stains surrounding some of the opaque grains may represent trace amounts of lawrencite, presumably produced after the fall.

Specimen Description:
Sample is an ex Museo civico di storia naturale, Milano specimen and comes with two old museum labels. Fragments are inside a glass vial. Specimen comes also with the original science paper: Il Meteorite di Assisi, Nota di Guiseppe Belluchi, 1887. Paper is dedicated to Michele Stefano de Rossi, who studied the Orivinio meteorite, by the author. The dedication says: “Al Signor Prof. Michele Stefano de Rossi. Omaggio e ricordo. ded. Aut.”

Michele Stefano de Rossi (30 October 1834, Rome – 23 October 1898, Rocca di Papa) was an Italian seismologist. He was a younger brother to archaeologistGiovanni Battista de Rossi (1822–1894).
He received his education at the University of Rome, and during his subsequent career conducted research in the fields of archaeology, paleontology, geology, vulcanology and seismology. He studied the topography of catacombs, and collaborated with his brother on La Roma sotterranea cristiana (1864–1877).

In the 1870s he developed a seismic scale to reflect varying levels of earthquake intensity. Meanwhile, in Switzerland, independent of Rossi, limnologist François-Alphonse Forel (1841–1912) created a similar seismic scale. When the two scientists became aware of each other’s work, a combined effort resulted in the Rossi–Forel scale for determining the intensity of earthquakes.

In 1874 he founded the Bullettino del Vulcanismo Italiano, a journal dedicated to the study of volcanoes and earthquakes.

The author, BELLUCCI, Giuseppe was born in Perugia in 1844. Graduated in physics and chemistry, he was appointed professor of organic and inorganic chemistry at the University of Perugia, and Director of the local Chemistry Laboratory and Metabolic Observatory. He left precious monographs on ozone, but his favorite studs were aimed at antiquity, folklore and ethnography of the surrounding area. He had collected a Rich Collection of Ancient Items and Ethnography that, purchased from the town of Perugia, has now been exhibited in a decorative palace. He died on January 3, 1921.

His main publications are, in addition to numerous articles in magazines: On ozone, 1869; On the views of prof. A. Selmi on Ozone, 1873; The Age of Stone in Emilia, 1876; On the alleged existence of hydrogen peroxide in the plant of plants, 1878; Armes et outils de l’ége de la pierre envoyés à l’exp. anthropologique, 1878; The Tertiary Man in Portugal, 1883; Palletological materials of the Province of Umbria, 1884; The Meteorite of Assisi, 1887; Bridal use in Umbria, 1895; Contemporary Italian Amulets, 1898; The first inhabitants of Val Ternana, Perugia 1903: The Primitive Fetishism in Italy, Perugia 1907; A chapter of popular psychology. Amulets, Perugia 1908; Parallèles éthnographiques. Amulettes. Libye acttielle. Italie Ancienne, Perugia 1915; The nails in ancient and contemporary ethnography, Perugia 1919, etc. The complete bibliography of your works in Bull. paletn. ital., XLIII (1923), p.

This is a good example of historic specimen with old labels.

Metbull data base

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