Gemmellaro Museum is one of the most important geological and paleontologic institutions of Italy. It is the fruit of the organizing and classifying efforts of Professor P. Calcara and Professor G.G. Gemmellaro during the 19th Century, and nowadays hosts more than 600,000 specimens, the most ancient of them from Sosio Valley dating back 270,000 years. The Olphin Room, on the first floor, has the didactical purpose of explaining the phases of Sicilian geological history, showing representative fossils and rocks. It also features specimens from Ferdinandea, a volcanic island which emerges and sinks from erosion every once in a while, the last recorded incidence being between 1831 and 1832. Upstairs the Room of Man hosts the skeleton of Thea, the most ancient Sicilian woman ever found, whose face was reconstructed using advanced technology. The Crystal Room shows beautiful specimens of minerals like sulphur, gypsum and celestine, which testify to the Mediterranean Sea’s closing during the Messinian age and the resulting evaporation of the water. A gypsum crystal still remains preserved, holding inside of it a drop of that ancient water. The museum also features the skeletons of Sicilian miniature elephants and other prehistoric animals that lived on the island.
- Open Hours: Monday to Saturday from 09:00 AM to 01:00 PM
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