Composition

All mountains are made up of rocks and all rocks of minerals (compounds that cannot be broken down except by chemical action). Of the approximately 2,000 known minerals, seven rock-forming minerals make up most of the earth's crust: quartz and feldspar make up granite and sandstone; olivene and pyroxene give basalt its dark color; and amphibole and biotite (mica) are the black crystalline specks in granitic rocks. Except for calcite, found in limestone, they all contain silicon and are often referred to as silicates.

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