Signs And Omens

USATODAY.com – Piece of Supreme Court marble falls near tourists

Piece of Supreme Court marble falls…

“The chunk of Vermont marble was part of the dentil molding that serves as a frame for nine sculptural figures completed in 1935. The piece that fell was over the figure of Authority, near the peak of the building’s pediment, and to the right of the figure of Liberty, who has the scales of justice on her lap.

A group of visitors had just entered the building and had passed under the pediment when the stone fell at 9:30 a.m. ET, Nov.28.

Jonathan Fink, a government attorney waiting in line to attend arguments, said, “All of a sudden, these blocks started falling. It was like a thud, thud.”

Ed Fisher, a government worker, said some of the marble pieces shattered, spraying the terrace four floors below the pediment with smaller chunks of stone. A group of students from Columbus, Ohio, tried to pocket some of the fragments as souvenirs, Fisher said.

…Earlier in the morning, dozens of people had lined up in hopes of getting a seat for arguments inside the court — a practice that is not unusual. Justices were back on the bench Monday following a two-week recess.

The fallen marble lay directly in the center of the path up to the court entrance.

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