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A GIBEON METEORITE SPHERE
A GIBEON METEORITE SPHERE

NAMALAND, NAMIBIA; MODERN CUTTING

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A GIBEON METEORITE SPHERE
NAMALAND, NAMIBIA; MODERN CUTTING
This sphere reveals in three dimensions the beautiful Widmanstätten pattern that is characteristic of Gibeon specimens
3½in. (9.5cm.) diameter

Lot Essay

Discovered in 1836 by James Edward Alexander (1803-85), a specimen of the Gibeon meteorite was sent to London, where it was confirmed as a meteorite by the astronomer John Herschel (1792-1871). Later research has determined the fall date to have been between 5,000 and 30,000 years ago. Originating from the molten core of an asteroid and after travelling millions of years in interplanetary space, it fell into Earth’s upper atmosphere before exploding and raining down over an elliptical strewn field in what is now Namibia. Due to a relatively high nickel content (8%), Gibeon is ductile and not as prone to oxidizing as most other iron meteorites. Only when cut and etched, the fine octahedral intergrowth of a Gibeon’s primary alloys is revealed.

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