Makrana marble

Makrana marble was used in the construction of the Taj Mahal.

Makrana marble is a type of white marble of high quality, popular for use in sculpture and building decor. It is mined in the town of Makrana in Rajasthan, India, and was used in the construction of several iconic monuments such as the Taj Mahal in Agra and the Victoria Memorial in Kolkata.

Contents

GeologyEdit

In the Makrana area, marble is found as five steeply-dipping bands.[1] They form part of the Ajmer Formation of the Delhi Supergroup, which is a sequence of sedimentary rocks that was deposited in the Delhi Basin during the Proterozoic. About 1450 Ma (million years ago) these rocks were affected by the Delhi Orogeny, causing the metamorphism that transformed the original limestones to marble and the folding that caused the steep dip and the current outcrop pattern.[2]

PropertiesEdit

Makrana is regarded as the oldest place in India with a marble quarry. Upon mining, Makrana marble is not subjected to any form of treatment, but used in cutting and chiseling straight away.[3] Makrana marble is one of the two calcitic marble varieties in India, with all others being dolomitic.[4] It has two varieties: white and albeta.[1] The quantity of marble reserves in the region is estimated to be 55 million tonnes by the state government.[4] About 120 thousand tonnes of the marble are produced annually from over 400 mines in the region.[5]

Makrana marble has high percentage of calcium and is therefore resistant to water seepage.[1] The water absorption of Makrana marble is said to be the lowest among all types in India, and the marble is claimed to contain 98 percent of calcium carbonate and only two percent of impurities. The different shades of Makrana marble are pure white, white with grey shades and white with pink shades, depending on the level of impurities. The close interlocking property of the marble makes it strong, hard and translucent. It is said to retain its shine and white color for a long period of time.[4]

Notable monuments and buildingsEdit

 
Victoria Memorial in Kolkata

Prominent buildings/monuments that used Makrana marble in their construction are:

Use and exportEdit

Marble from Makrana is exported overseas mainly to the Persian Gulf countries, the European Union, Southeast Asia, Canada, Pakistan and Russia.[4][5] In India, it is mainly used for handicraft and sculpture work, apart from construction of buildings.[4] Makrana marble was given the geographical indication status in 2015 by the Geographical Indication Registry, Chennai.[15]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c "Makrana Marble" (pdf). portal.gsi.gov.in. Retrieved 31 January 2016. 
  2. ^ Roy, A. & Purohit R. "4. Lithostratigraphic, geochronological and depositional framework of the Precambrian basins of the Aravalli Mountains and adjoining areas, Rajasthan, India". In Mazumder R. & Eriksson P.G. Precambrian Basins of India: Stratigraphic and Tectonic Context (PDF). Memoirs of the Geological Society. 45. Geological Society, London. pp. 55–65. doi:10.1144/M43.4. 
  3. ^ Govind, Ranjani (4 February 2012). "There is magic in the Makrana marble". The Hindu. Retrieved 31 January 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "G.I. Application Number – 405" (PDF). Government of India Geographical Indications Journal. 64: 7–14. 2014. 
  5. ^ a b Siva, Meera (26 July 2015). "Tiles can floor marble". The Hindu Business Line. Retrieved 31 January 2016. 
  6. ^ a b "Kolkata's landmark Victoria Memorial getting makeover". The Times of India. 22 July 2015. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  7. ^ McFarland, Rob (13 August 2015). "A rare glimpse behind India's tourist facade". stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  8. ^ Rysman, Laura (22 November 2015). "The Boucheron Collection That Came Out of India". The New York Times. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  9. ^ "Superiority of Makrana (Rajasthan) Marbles" (pdf). insa.nic.in. Retrieved 31 January 2016. 
  10. ^ Shikhani, Ammar (24 November 2010). "UAE: Queen Elizabeth Visits Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque". Global Arab Network. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  11. ^ "ये है दुनिया की सबसे खूबसूरत मस्जिद, अंदर लगा है मकराना का मार्बल". dainikbhaskar.com. 17 August 2015. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  12. ^ Dar, Nadeem (20 June 2015). "A pearl inside Lahore Fort – Moti Masjid". Pakistan Today. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  13. ^ Shahid, Mahnoor (3 January 2015). "Historical mosques of Lahore". Pakistan Today. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  14. ^ Goyal, Divya (14 September 2015). "Dukhnivaran Sahib Gurdwara: Prayer hall thrown open to public, after 15 years of renovation". The Indian Express. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  15. ^ "India's GI List Gets Longer with 20 New Products". The New Indian Express. 6 April 2015. Retrieved 31 January 2016.