Marble is a non-foliated metamorphic rock that is composed mostly of calcite mixed with minerals such as mica, quartz, pyrite, iron oxide, and graphite. This stone can be found in a variety of natural colors including white, pink, gray, black, and yellow. It is derived from limestone and has a low hardness so it can easily be cut, carved, and shaped. Marble is often used in sculptures, countertops, floor and wall tiles, architectural columns, and tabletops. Although it is dense and relatively nonporous, it can corrode if acid is left on it, so countertops require maintenance if it comes in contact with acidic foods, such as vinegar or citrus.
Due to the veins of light or dark minerals throughout the rock, quarried slabs are cut perpendicular to the veining in a cross cut—also known as a fleuri cut—that results in a bloom pattern, or parallel to the veining in a vein cut—also known as a striato—for a linear, striped appearance.