DescriptionSPLIT FOSSIL PINE CONE
The Araucaria species is one of the oldest tree-types still on this Earth, and one of the mightiest. Ancestor to the modern monkey-puzzle tree and the Norfolk pine, the A. mirabilis was a coniferous evergreen abundant across the Americas in the Jurassic period. The tallest recorded fossil specimen is 500 feet, high enough even to escape the long necks of the giant sauropods that leisurely grazed these pine forests, stripping the bark from the smaller branches and feasting on the cones with their nutrient-rich seeds. This single 3 3/8-inch cone, split and polished, not only shows what tasty treats they were, but also stands as an object of great aesthetic beauty in its own right. Beneath the heavily textured preserved scales of the cone's casing, the striking patterns of the seeds in the cross-cut and polished face sections are colored in a lovely soft pattern of cream, pale gray-brown and orangey salmon, highlighted at the center by a small patch of sparkling silvery pyritization, quite uncommon in these specimens.
Estimate: $1,200 - $1,600.
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