• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 12052

    Science & Natural History

    19 October 2016, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 54

    GLORIETA MOUNTAIN PALLASITE A SUPERB COMPLETE SLICE FROM THE SCHONER MASS

    STONY-IRON – PAL-ANOM
    GLORIETA MOUNTAIN, NEW MEXICO

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    GLORIETA MOUNTAIN PALLASITE A SUPERB COMPLETE SLICE FROM THE SCHONER MASS
    Stony-Iron – PAL-ANOM
    Glorieta Mountain, New Mexico
    This specimen features the signature sulfide inclusions of this meteorite along with crystals of olivine and peridot (the semi-precious birthstone of August) suspended in a highly polished metallic matrix. This is among the finest complete slices of the Glorieta Mountain pallasite known to exist.
    203 x 169 x 3mm (8 x 6 2/3 x 1/8in.)
    357g


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    Contact the department

    The complete slice of Glorieta Mountain now offered was adjacent to the slice whose image served as the frontispiece of the Cambridge Encyclopedia of Meteorites. Less than 0.2% of all meteorites are pallasites — the most resplendent of all meteorites — and Glorieta Mountain is the most famous American pallasite. In 1965 the "Father of Meteoritics", Harvey Nininger, befriended a teenaged Steve Schoner and informed him of the small meteorites found on Glorieta Mountain in northern New Mexico. Years later, Schoner's recovery of tiny pallasitic fragments fueled his belief in the existence of a far larger mass — a Holy Grail to meteorite enthusiasts. After seventy searches of two to three weeks each over a period of 15 years, Schoner's efforts finally paid off. The stunning specimen now offered is from the 20 kg meteorite recovered by Schoner. As a result of the material lost from cutting, grinding and polishing, only 11 kg of fine specimens from this historic mass exist. While pallasites are extremely rare, Glorieta Mountain is rarer still because it is chemically and morphologically anomalous. It also has a relatively high abundance of iron sulfide (the mineral troilite), leading researchers to classify Glorieta as an anomalous member of the main pallasite group.

    Special Notice

    These lots have been imported from outside the EU for sale using a Temporary Import regime. Import VAT is payable (at 5%) on the Hammer price. VAT is also payable (at 20%) on the buyer’s Premium on a VAT inclusive basis. This VAT is not shown separately on the invoice. When a buyer of such a lot has registered an EU address but wishes to export the lot or complete the import into another EU country, he must advise Christie's immediately after the auction.


    Provenance

    Steve Schoner Meteorite Collection, Clyde Tombaugh House, Flagstaff, Arizona