The interesting history of limestone

Limestone is one of the most popular natural stones that is used for tiling in the world and has been for thousands of years. For those of you who are new to the concept of limestone tiles, or those of you who are just interested in learning about their remarkable history, we’ve put together a brief timeline, outlining the history of limestone and how it’s come to be the stunning tiles that we know today.

pyramids of giza made of limestone

But first…

What Actually is Limestone?
Taking you back to your school days… Limestone is a sedimentary rock which is made up mostly of calcium carbonate in the form of calcite. Generally, it is mostly formed in warm, clear and shallow marine waters making it an organic sedimentary rock. It’s formed as a product of an accumulation of shells, corals, algal and other debris. Similarly, limestone can also be a chemical sedimentary rock which is formed by the precipitation of calcium carbonate from a lake or the ocean water.

How Long Does it Take for Limestone to Form?
It can take millions of years for limestone to form – that’s the nature of sedimentary rock. This means that the tiles we sell have been around longer than anything else you have probably ever come across. We think that this is part of what makes limestone so beautiful and special.

For How Many Years has Limestone Been used for Construction Purposes?
Since man has lived in houses. There is evidence all over the world of limestone being used for construction purposes from thousands and thousands of years ago (yes, that’s how durable limestone is). The Great Pyramids of Giza which are 4,575 years old, are made completely out of limestone and as we all know, are still standing strong today. Limestone buildings from the Roman times are also still standing as well as hundreds and hundreds of other famously historic buildings.

How is Limestone Found?
Limestone, like all other natural stone, is quarried from mines across the world, namely in Turkey and the US. These Artisan stone miners have been around for centuries, quarrying in well known areas, collecting limestone for the purpose of building.

Now for the Limestone Timeline…

7000 BCE
Limestone was used to create lime mortar floor

2560 BCE
Limestone was used for pyramids and temples (such as the Great Pyramids in Egypt)

300 BCE
The Romans produced lime production technology

10 CE
Lime cement was created and used in Roman roads

476 CE
The Dark Ages. The use of limestone was diminished for a long time

Saw the return of limestone as it was used to whiten the Great Tower of London

Limestone was used for the restoration of the Great Wall of China

16th Century
Lime was used as an agricultural fertiliser

Saw the debut of Hydraulic mortar

Limestone was used for Portland cement

Limestone gets used for plasticised PVC

The float glass method is brought into practice

Limestone is used in paper manufacturing and pcc

21st Century
There is 5000 million tonnes of limestone used worldwide