Marble: Characteristics, Uses and Importance

Natural stones are popular in the field of construction as a sturdy and long-lasting material. Among various types of natural stones, Marble is one of the most commonly used stones. It is a non-foliated metamorphic rock, mainly composed of calcite (a re-crystallized carbonate mineral). It also contains other minerals, like clay minerals, micas, quartz, pyrite, iron oxides and graphite. Marble is hard in nature, and is formed due to the re-crystallization of the limestone under the heat of geological processes and high pressure. It is usually used as a building material and to make sculptures. Some of the popular structures made from marble, include: The Taj Mahal, Washington Monument, Bust of the Greek Goddess- Artemis, Roman Baths and Lincoln Memorial.

Types and Characteristics

Majorly marble is of two types: one made-up of Calcite and other made from Dolomite. As compared to calcite marble, dolomite marble is high resistant to acid attacks. Being made-up of calcium carbonate, marble is very hard in nature. Therefore, it is perfect to be used for making sculptures and ornamental accessories. This metamorphic rock is usually light in color, and when it is formed from limestone with some impurities, it will be in white color. Moving ahead, when marble is formed from other minerals like clay minerals, iron oxides or bituminous material, it can be found in colors like blue, gray, pink, yellow, black and green.

White marble is highly pure in nature and is extremely useful. Frequently, it is mined and crushed to a powder form and then processed in order to eliminate impurities, as much as possible. The formed powder is then used as a coloring agent as well as filler in cosmetics, paint, plastic, putty, paper, whitewash and other manufacturing products.

Uses of Marble

As compared to other rocks, Marble has plenty of uses.

• It is used to make beautiful sculptures and sculpture bases.
• In architecture, it is used in flooring, exterior walls, stairways and walkways.
• It is used in agriculture and pharmaceuticals due to its chemical properties.
• It is used in paint, and to make paper and cosmetics, owing to its optical properties.
• It is used in construction projects, as it is a low-cost material in crushed stone.

Importance

Due to its highly useful properties, Marble is an important natural stone in several ways. It is important as an architectural material on account of its sturdiness along with classic beauty. It is extensively used in homes, hotels and restaurants to express elegance. It is perfect stone for interior designing due to its built-in blend of originality, long-life and craft. The importance of marble can also be acknowledged from the fact that it is a symbol of tradition and refined taste in Greek and Roman Culture. Also, it has been a favorite medium for Greek and Roman sculptors and architects.