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Granite

Updated Wednesday 27th September 2006

A brief description of the nature of granite

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Granite is a coarse-grained intrusive igneous rock. It contains large interlocking crystals which are randomly oriented. It is light in colour and contains a number of minerals, mostly feldspars, which are pale grey or pinkish, and quartz which is white or grey. It also contains small black specs of mafic (dark coloured) minerals.

Granite Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: The Open University

How was it formed?
Granite formed deep in the Earth’s crust from large masses of cooling magma that never made it to the surface. Slow cooling produces the large crystals. Granite forms from magma that contains a lot of quartz silica.

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