Facts about marble

15 Interesting Facts About Marble

Humanity has been using marble for thousands of years. This stone is popular due to its durability and appearance.

Amazing facts about marble stone

  • Marble looks so interesting because it consists almost entirely of only one mineral – calcite, or calcareous spar, which is why it seems homogeneous. In other words, marble is not a mineral, but a rock formed from recrystallized calcareous spar.
  • There is marble in a variety of colors. They are caused by the impurities present in it, which sometimes give it very beautiful and unusual shades.
  • The most “marble” city in the world is Ashgabat, the capital of Turkmenistan. There are many buildings lined with this mineral. It all looks very nice, but Turkmenistan is a closed country with a brutal dictatorship, like in North Korea.
  • The word “marble” is formed from the ancient Greek μάρμαρος (“marmaros”). It means “white stone” or “shiny stone”. This rock usually has a very pleasant white color, and it shines beautifully indeed.
  • White marble changes its color under the sunlight, but that’s a long process. Therefore, in some ancient buildings built from it, its shade has changed over the centuries – it has become yellowish on the sunny side, and on the shady side, it remains white, sometimes with a bluish tinge.

Historical facts about marble

Marble quarry
Marble quarry in Italy
  • The most valuable and expensive kind of marble is called “Carrara”, named after the Italian city of Carrara, where it is mined. Quarries in Carrara have been working for about two thousand years already.
  • The Romans highly valued this mineral. Since the reign of Caesar, they used it for the construction of important buildings and houses of wealthy patricians.
  • Sculptors of antiquity also widely used marble. The famous Michelangelo made his sculptures from it, too.
  • In India, some people believe that marble figurines of deities are conduits between their world and the world of people.
  • People mostly use marble not for the construction of buildings, but for their decoration. This is due to the fact that there are other construction materials that are cheaper and more durable.

Random facts

Marble cave
Marble cave
  • It is a very durable mineral. The marble mosaics in the ruins of Roman palaces, which are several thousand years old, have been perfectly preserved. If these palaces have survived till nowadays, of course.
  • Experts identify about two hundred different varieties of this rock. They differ from each other in color and other characteristics. This mineral can be not only white, there are even black (well, almost black) sorts of it, but they are quite rare.
  • The chemical composition of marble is almost identical to that of limestone. However, according to other characteristics, these rocks are very different. Limestone is way less durable.
  • Buildings constructed of marble can stand for centuries and even millennia. Sand, wind, and water would need hundreds of years to leave their marks on them.
  • This mineral doesn’t absorb energy or heat quickly, making it quite resistant to heat. The building finished with it will maintain the microclimate inside better, especially in hot and sunny areas.

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