Marble has been used in architecture and aesthetics since before the Roman Empire and typically by the elite and upper classes. It was particularly hard to find back then due to it’s typical finding in mountainous regions. The original rarity can be linked to its association with affluence and decadent life styles.
The history of marble as a cultural status symbol can be traced back to Greece – around the year 440 BC with the building of the Parthenon. The Parthenon was one of the world’s first structures to be made entirely of marble and it quickly became a symbol of exquisite grandeur around the world. Since marble was difficult to obtain, it made the material expensive, so only the most elite could afford to buy it. Marble is also easy to carve and hard to destroy, so it quickly became a high class symbol and sought after material among artists and high class societies. Today, colored marble is often thought to be more precious than white marble as colored marble is even harder to obtain.
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