SPECTROSCOPIC INVESTIGATION ON PAINT LAYERS OF SABIL-KUTTAB UMM 'ABBAS CEILING, MOHAMMED ALI ERA IN CAIRO, EGYPT: IDENTIFICATION OF UNUSUAL PIGMENT AND MEDIUM
Document Type: Original article
Abdel-Ghani, M. 1 ; Mahmoud, M. 2
1 Lecturer, Conservation dept., Faculty of Archaeology, Cairo Univ., Giza, Egypt.
2 Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA), Egypt
A comprehensive study has been undertaken into Sabil-Kuttab Umm 'Abbas ceiling (1867 AD/1284 H) in Cairo, Egypt. The study included both organic and inorganic constituents comprising; the pigments, the paint media, the gold layer and the white ground layer. The analytical instruments chosen for the study were Raman microscopy, Fourier transform infra red spectroscopy coupled with attenuated total reflection (FTIR-ATR) and optical microscopy. The pigments identified were ultramarine blue Na6[Al6Si6O24]Sn, indigo (C16H10N2O2), vermilion (á-HgS), red ochre (Fe2O3+clay+silica), barium white (BaSO4), lead white [2PbCO3. Pb(OH)2] and cobalt yellow (K3[Co(NO2)6]). The chromate mineral, hemihedrite (ZnPb10(CrO4)6(SiO4)2F2), was detected for the first time as an artistic pigment in this study. The paint media revealed were animal glue admixed with linseed oil and mastic resin. The detection of mastic resin as a paint medium in Egyptian paintings is of interest. The white ground layer was found to consist of calcium sulfate dihydrate (CaSO4.2H2O) and calcite (CaCO3) admixed with animal glue.
Sabil; Kuttab; Umm Abbas; Mohammad Ali Era; Raman spectroscopy; FTIR; Hemihedrite; Mastic
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