Alberese Limestone

Generale_Calcare Alberese
Detail of the churchyard (Santissima Annunziata) in Alberese Limestone.


Alberese Limestone

Common names

Calcare Alberese, Pietra Alberese, Alberese

Rock classification

Sedimentary rock

It outcrops in Tuscany, mainly to the north-east of Prato, to the north-west and east of Firenze and in the south of the Chianti Mountains.

Turbiditic limestone of the Monte Morello Formation from the Calvana supergroup (external Liguridi, Paleocene-Eocene).

The Alberese Limestone was used in Firenze in Roman times and in later period only in rare cases as for instance in the ancient Torre della Pagliazza, in the Certosa and in the Basilica della Santissima Annunziata churchyard. It represents the only lime stone of the Florentine territory.

Mainly calcitic in composition (80-95%) with small amount of clay minerals.

Macroscopic description

It is a compact, fine-grained rock, with low porosity. Inside the strata, the havana color can vary from the ochraceous to the whitish-bluish and the olive green, depending on the amount of clay minerals present. Calcite veins are frequent.

Hand sample of an Alberese Limestone.

Microscopic description

Micritic limestone from weakly marly to fine grained marly. High content of foraminifera can be present.

Thin section micrograph of an Alberese Limestone.