DescriptionPETRIFIED TREE TRUNK
This impressive piece is from the beautiful petrified wood deposits of Indonesia. Millions of years ago, the area was blanketed with thick rainforest and dotted with volcanoes. When these volcanoes erupted, some of the trees that grew on their slopes were instantly destroyed, but others at a slightly greater distance were completely buried in silica-rich volcanic ash. This protected the wood from the elements and prevented its decay and, slowly over millions of years, the silica minerals (quartz, chalcedony, jasper) were carried by water seeping into the wood and replaced the structure of the original tree on a microscopic level, atom by atom. So fine is this process of replacement that the cellular structure can still be observed. Much petrified wood from this area is coarse-grained, making it hard to polish, but the present example is from a fine-grained wood and has been polished all around. The original contours of the trunk have been retained, and with beautiful patination in warm shades of gray, reddish-tan, soft brown and creamy white it still has the unmistakable appearance of wood. Furthermore, several branching sections have been sawn off to reveal the perfectly preserved patterning of the wood's original growth rings, adding further character to the imposing and impressive piece, standing 52½ inches high.
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