Marble is composed of granular limestone or dolomite (i.e., rock composed of calcium-magnesium carbonate) that has been recrystallized under the influence of heat, pressure, and water solutions (Encyclopedia Britannica). Marble is a translucent stone that allows light to enter and produce a soft “glow.” It also has the ability to be highly polished. These properties make it a beautiful stone for producing sculptures. It is soft, making it easy to sculpt, and when it is fine-grained it has uniform properties in all directions. Although rare and expensive, it was used widely in both architecture and sculpture. Marble was prized for its translucency, durability and naturalistic physical properties. Renaissance Italian artists favored marble for its allusion to the classical worlds of Hellenistic Greece and the Roman Empire.
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