In the market there are many types of black marble, everyone with particular aesthetic characteristics.
The black color of this type of stone is mainly explained by its genesis in continental shelves that have received an important volume of carbonate sediments with abundant organic matter, in conditions of oxygen scarcity. This kind of deposits have occurred in several geological stages of the Mesozoic (Cretaceous) and Paleozoic (Devonian-Carboniferous) in different areas of the world.
Most black marbles are characterized by their abundance of fossils (although there are exceptions as we will see below). The type of fossils will vary depending on the geological epoch to which they belong and the paleo-environment in which they were deposited.
From the wide variety of black colored stones that exist in the market, we have selected five of them whose names you will never forget.
Nero Saint Laurent
Nero St Laurent Marble is a fine-grained black limestone with golden brown veining and white vein encrustations. It has been quarried in Laurens, France since 1885.
From a geological point of view, these limestones are found at the level of a Devonian Laurens-Cabrières tectonic island or klippe. The local Devonian materials, almost 100 m thick, are affected by a slight contact metamorphism (low temperature and pressure), which has resulted in a slight compaction of these limestones.
The main characteristics of these marbles are:
- Country: France
- Dark grey to black shades
- Golden and white veins
Nero Port Saint Laurent
Nero Port Saint Laurent Marble is a fine-grained, dark brown/grey limestone with golden calcite veining that shines on polishing.
The quarry is located in the Agadir-Biougra area, it is a Meosozoic material and it is located at the boundary between two carbonate platforms of the High Atlas and Anti Atlas.
The main characteristics of this marble are:
- Country: Morocco
- Dark grey to black shades, although with a slightly more greyish background than the previous ones.
- Golden and white veins, much more frequent than those mentioned above.
Negro Marquina is possibly the Black Marble of reference worldwide, due to the intensity and homogeneity of its black background and its characteristic white veins.
It is a fine-grained black reef limestone whose white veining corresponds to calcite deposits.
It is extracted in the quarries of Markina (Vizcaya), Spain.
The main characteristics of this stone are:
- Country: Spain/Italy
- Fine grain.
- With fossils/occasionally.
- Very dark grey to black shades.
- White veins of irregular thickness.
Fossil Black marble
The Fossil Black Marble is a black/dark gray limestone with medium/coarse grain and a large amount of shelly fossils such as Ammonites Goniatites and Orthoceras, so it is located in the Upper Devonian.
The quarry from which it is extracted is located in the area of Erfoud, Morocco.
The main characteristics of Fossil Black Marble are.
- Country: Morocco
- Medium/coarse grain
- High content of fossils: Ammonites and Orthoceras
- Matrix or background of dark gray to black tones
- Very characteristic white veins and fossils
Nero Dorato marble
The Tunisian Black Marble called Nero Dorato is also known as Nero Sahara, Sahara Noir, Black Aziza Marble, Nero Tunisi, Nero Berber, etc.
It is located in the Zaghouan area in northeastern Tunisia, 60 km south of Tunis.
It is micritic limestones with the presence of oolites and plantonic foraminifera. The colors range from gray to black. White veins of calcite recrystallization appear in white, brown and golden colors.
The main characteristics of the Nero Dorato Marble are.
- Country: Tunisia
- Fine/very fine grained
- With occasional fossils
- Very dark gray to black background
- White and/or brown/golden calcite recrystallization veins
See more about marble stones: Italian types of marble here.