Chemical Science and Conservation by David Burgess (auth.)

By David Burgess (auth.)

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For example, Mesopotamian glasses were considerably richer in magnesium than contemporary Egyptian glasses. Roman glass often contained aluminium, which improves durability, as is seen in the excellent preservation of Roman artefacts in museums. 1 The Portland Vase. Late first century BC and reputed to have been found just outside Rome in the late sixteenth century. To make it, a glassblower inflated a 'gob' of blue glass inside a case of white glass. The white glass was then cut away to form the cameo relief.

The table shows the relative ease with which selected metals may be deformed by drawing into wire (ductility) and hammering/rolling into sheets (malleability), without failure I Increasing I Ductility Malleability Au Ag Fe Cu Sn Pb Au Ag Cu Pb Sn Fe CHEMICAL BEHAVIOUR OF METALS The chemical properties of metals are related to their tendency to lose their valence electrons, generally by donating them to atoms of 42 non-metals such as oxygen, sulphur and chlorine (as happens in the formation of their ores).

TURNING THE CLOCK BACK In addition to protecting and consolidating stone, it is sometimes deemed advisable to restore missing material. Bulk restoration of walls and buildings is often necessary for reasons of safety, and this is 26 carried out using modern materials in a manner sympathetic to the existing structure, but not necessarily identical with it. Rather more subtle techniques are called for when the carved surface details of monuments and statues need to be restored. In many cases, of course, this outer material has been lost and the original features cannot be reproduced, unless a detailed record is available.

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