Campan marble

The Campan marble is a type of marble taken from the quarries of the Campan site located in the high valley of Ardour in the department of Hautes-Pyrénées. There are different varieties, all of which can be identified through the marked dark green veins - the Campan rubané marble, the green Campan marble, the pink and green Campan marble, the Campan grand mélange marble and a variety of red Griotte marble.
This material was used since the 1st century B.C. and during the Middle Ages. However, the production was truly increased during the reign of François Ier. The Campan marble was applied as a precious stone or a jewel and decorated the front façades with other polychromatic marbles.
The use of the Campan marble was particularly important during the reign of Louis XIV who added this material abundantly in the palace of Versailles. This material echoed an elaborate royal symbolism - the shapes referred to a victorious Antiquity while the material implied a kind of national pride. This style continued during the 19th century through the production of furniture and fireplaces made out of Campan marble. Nowadays, the quarries are closed and protected.

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