When Mother Nature Goes Too Far: Aurisina Quarry.
Updated: Oct 11, 2019
The history, quarrying techniques and products of our Aurisina quarry.
A never-ending story
The quarrying activity of the Karst, the plateau overlooking the city of Trieste (North East of Italy), starts more than two thousand years ago, when Roman stone cutters started to quarry local stones during the Roman Republic period.
In the beginning, these were intensively used for the construction of the historic colony of Aquileia as well as in Tergeste, the then Trieste, and its surroundings.
Following a decline during Middle Age, the stones of Aurisina saw their heyday during the prosperous period of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, when Trieste became the main port of Vienna and thousands of cubic meters of marble were employed in the most celebrated buildings of Vienna, Budapest, Munich, Ljubljana, Zagreb, Trieste and several other cities of the kingdom.
During the twentieth century and the last decades, these stones have found application in a great number of projects in the main cities of Italy, Europe and the world in countries such as Australia, China, India, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, United States, and more.
How is it quarried?
Our Aurisina quarry is an open-pit quarry whose stoping starts when levels are identified. Each of these levels has two faces that are created by means of diamond wire cuts. When a level is ready, it is split into benches that will be subject to tilting and, once on the ground, cut into blocks.
Some beautiful natural stones
Currently, the products of our Aurisina quarry are Aurisina Fiorita and Aurisina Lumachella, two grey marbles embellished by fossils, composed of more than 99% of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) and characterised by great hardness and consequent suitability for a broad variety of finishings. As a matter of fact, these can be finely polished, honed, brushed, bush-hammered, sand-blasted, leathered, and so on. Additionally, thanks to their colour and patterns, these are extremely elegant and versatile materials that happen to be greatly suitable for applications in different architectural and design styles.
- Cucchi, F & Gerdol, S 1985, I Marmi del Carso Triestino, Camera di Commercio Industria Artigianato e Agricoltura di Trieste, Trieste, Italy.
- Università degli Studi di Trieste 2010, Cave Romane di Aurisina, Geositi del Friuli Venezia Giulia, Trieste, viewed 30 November 2018, <https://geologia.units.it/geositi/vedigeo1.php?ID_GEO=207>.