Dictionary of Geotourism

2020 Edition
| Editors: Anze Chen, Young Ng, Erkuang Zhang, Mingzhong Tian

Fangshan White Marble

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-13-2538-0_685

The source of this name in Chinese is unclear. It probably refers to a type of white marble found in Dashiwo in Fangshan, Beijing. This stone looks like the jade mined in Hotian. However, the Hotian jade is composed of pebbles found in water (also called water white jade), but the Fangshan white marble is mined in mountainous dry areas, so it is called dry white jade. It is unclear why it was given the name ‘Han white jade’ in Chinese. Fangshan white marble is a very pure white marble composed of CaCO3, MgCO3 and SiO2 with small amounts of aluminium and iron. It is a metamorphosed limestone or dolomite. The Han white jade that was used to construct the imperial palaces in the Ming and Qing Dynasties was mainly mined in the northern foothills of the Taihang Mountains near Quyang, Hebei Province, and Dawoshi at Fangshan in Beijing. The stone produced in these locations has a fine texture and is white, and it is an ornamental stone material used for architectural and sculptural purposes.

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