Verd antique (obsolete French, from Italian, verde antico, "ancient green"), also called verde antique or Ophite, is a serpentinite breccia popular since ancient times as a decorative facing stone. It is a dark, dull green, white-mottled (or white-veined) serpentine, mixed with calcite, dolomite, or magnesite, which takes a high polish.
Non-brecciated varieties of a very similar serpentinite, sometimes also called "verd antique", have been quarried at Victorville, California; Cardiff, Maryland; and Rochester in Addison County, Vermont.
Verd antique is used like marble especially in interior decoration and occasionally as outdoor trim, although the masses are frequently jointed and often only small slabs can be secured. It was known to the ancient Romans and was quarried especially at Casambala, near Larissa, Thessaly, in Greece. Verd antique was much used by the monumental builders of the Byzantine Empire and by the Ottomans after them. The term "verd antique" has been documented in English texts as early as 1745.
Verd antique is the national gemstone of Ireland, where it is called Connemara marble, named after the region in the western part of the country in which it is quarried (including Lissoughter in Recess, County Galway, and in Clifden).
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