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Marble is a metamorphic rock resulting from the metamorphism of limestone, composed mostly of calcite (a crystalline form of calcium carbonate, CaCO3). It is extensively used for sculpture, as a building material, and in many other applications. The word 'marble' is colloquially used to refer to many other stones that are capable of taking a high polish.

Faux marble or faux marbling is a wall painting technique that imitates the color patterns of real marble (not to be confused with paper marbling). Marble dust can be combined with cement or synthetic resins to make reconstituted or cultured marble.

Places named after the stone include Marble Arch, London; the Sea of Marmara; India's Marble Rocks; and the towns of Marble, Minnesota; Marble, Colorado; and Marble Hill, Manhattan, New York. The Elgin Marbles are marble sculptures from the Parthenon that are on display in the British Museum. They were brought to Britain by the Earl of Elgin.

Origins Marble is a metamorphic rock resulting from regional or at times contact metamorphism of sedimentary carbonate rocks, either limestone or dolostone. This metamorphic process causes a complete recrystallization of the original rock into an interlocking mosaic of calcite and/or dolomite crystals. The temperatures and pressures necessary to form marble usually destroy any fossils and sedimentary textures present in the original rock.

Pure white marble is the result of metamorphism of very pure limestones. The characteristic swirls and veins of many colored marble varieties are usually due to various mineral impurities such as clay, silt, sand, iron oxides, or chert which were originally present as grains or layers in the limestone. Green coloration is often due to serpentine resulting from originally high magnesium limestone or dolostone with silica impurities. These various impurities have been mobilized and recrystallized by the intense pressure and heat of the metamorphism.

Granite is a common and widely-occurring type of intrusive, felsic, igneous rock. Granites are usually a white, black or buff color and are medium to coarse grained, occasionally with some individual crystals larger than the groundmass forming a rock known as porphyry. Granites can be pink to dark gray or even black, depending on their chemistry and mineralogy.

Outcrops of granite tend to form tors, rounded massifs, and terrains of rounded boulders cropping out of flat, sandy soils. Granites sometimes occur in circular depressions surrounded by a range of hills, formed by the metamorphic aureole or hornfels. Granite is nearly always massive, hard and tough, and it is for this reason it has gained widespread use as a construction stone.

The average density of granite is 2.75 gcm-3 with a range of 1.74 gcm-3 to 2.80 gcm-3. The word granite comes from the Latin granum, a grain, in reference to the coarse-grained structure of such a crystalline rock.

Origins Granite is an igneous rock and is formed from magma. Granite magma has many potential origins but it must intrude other rocks. Most granite intrusions are emplaced at depth within the crust, usually greater than 1.5 km and up to 50 km depth within thick continental crust.

The origin of granite is contentious and has led to varied schemes of classification. Classification schemes are regional; there is a French scheme, a British scheme and an American scheme. This confusion arises because the classification schemes define granite by different means. Generally the 'alphabet-soup' classification is used because it classifies based on genesis or origin of the magma.

 
 
   
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