The History Of Granite Countertops

The choice of kings, the wealthy, and powerful because of it's incredible beauty and strength, granite is a natural stone formed by nature. An igneous rock with medium to coarse textures, granite is created as a result of volcanic activity plus years of compression and heat below the earth's surface. Ancient buildings and monuments made of granite still stand today.

Evidence of granite being used as a favorite building material can be found as early as the Ancient Egyptians. The Great Pyramid of Cheops was lined with granite for it's beauty. The inner chamber of the Pharaoh was built entirely of huge granite stones.

The Romans loved granite for durability beauty, and strength. Although quarried exclusively for construction, the Romans used granite as paving stones on roads. They also used it in constructing the Pantheon. Granite was used for the columns and those columns are still standing today. Even the famous bath houses of Ancient Rome were made from granite.

During the Renaissance period, better quarrying and fabrication techniques were discovered. With these discoveries, the use of granite became more extensive. Granite began to be used in the building of churches, homes, monuments, and palaces. Signs of granite being used for personal use in baths and pools appeared in literature from the Greek Empire.

The quarrying of granite began in the United Kingdom in the late 18th century. Originally found alone the coastal regions, the granite was transported by sea to urban areas. With the introduction of steamships in the 1840's, granite could be more easily transported and was exported to Europe, America, and Australia.

As the years moved on, the quarrying techniques greatly improved. Innovative technology made access to granite much easier and safer for miners than previous techniques. At the same time, the world began to think in more eco-friendly terms. Builders and buyers preferred to use durable yet stylish materials that were natural. Granit's extreme durability (it is not easily prone to chipping or scratching) and ability to withstand extreme heat made it a natural choice for counter tops.

Granite is a product that man has not been able to re-invent. The surface depth that appears three dimensional with a wide variety of surfaces, finishes, and colors makes this natural material a beautiful addition to homes. Granite is composed of feldspar, quartz, and mica but may also contain bits of muscovite, biotite, hornblende, pegmatite, and pryoxene. These secondary components of the granite are what give granite it's color. It is said that there are approximately 3000 color varieties of granite. Each piece of granite is unique, giving each buyer not only a durable, eco friendly counter top, but a unique visual aesthetic as well.

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