Villamayor Stone (Golden Stone) as a Global Heritage Stone Resource from Salamanca (NW of Spain)
J. Garcia-Talegón, A. C. Iñigo, G. Alonso-Gavilán, S. Vicente-Tavera, 2015. "Villamayor Stone (Golden Stone) as a Global Heritage Stone Resource from Salamanca (NW of Spain)", Global Heritage Stone: Towards International Recognition of Building and Ornamental Stones, D. Pereira, B. R. Marker, S. Kramar, B. J. Cooper, B. E. Schouenborg
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Villamayor Stone (VS) is an arkosic stone and is known by several names: (i) VS because the quarries are located in Villamayor de Armuña village (Salamanca, Spain); (ii) Golden Stone due to its patina, which gives the stone a ochreous/golden colour; (iii) Franca Stone is known locally and in historical documents. VS has several varieties ranging from channel to floodplain facies. In this work, we have selected three varieties. VS was quarried and used in the construction of Romanesque monuments such as the Old Cathedral, Gothic monuments including the New Cathedral and the University façade, and Baroque monuments, notably the Main Square. Also, VS was used in the reconstruction of the Roman Bridge (Salamanca, Spain). Currently, VS is quarried by a small number of family businesses, using traditional methods for cladding façades of new buildings. Unfortunately, part of the construction sector went bankrupt in the 2008 crisis. However, VS is still the main stone used in the city of Salamanca for the restoration of monuments, even though used in relatively small quantities in comparison with usage before the economic crisis. It is thus of great importance for future generations that their quarries and the craft of masonry be protected. This work proposes that VS should be designated as a Global Heritage Stone Resource.