Laccolith
A geological formation found on actively sedimentary and usually Gaian Type worlds; in which magma trapped beneath the surface pushes the rock located above it into a dome shape.

The magma cools and solidifies, and eventually, as the fractured sedimentary rock above it erodes, is exposed. The resulting landform is characterized by a flat base and a convex upper surface. Laccoliths were particularly prized by the Auld Limner "demon painters", and are in high demand among some hyperturing aesthetic clades as local habitat decorations. Unfortunately, the number of naturally-formed laccoliths is too small to meet the demand, and there is a flourish black market trade, especially in the larger ( > 10 6 tonnes); on some worlds unscrupulous poachers will laser an entire hill free, cut it into small chunks for transport, and then cunningly reassemble it with specially designed nanites, and present it to a buyer as a rare "intact" rock formation.
 
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Development Notes
Text by M. Alan Kazlev

Initially published on 03 December 2001.