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Aberdeen is dubbed the granite city as from mid-18th to mid-20th centuries Aberdeen's buildings incorporated locally quarried grey granite, which may sparkle like silver because of its high mica content. Since the discovery of North Sea oil in the 1970s, Aberdeen has been known as the off-shore oil capital of Europe. The area around Aberdeen has been settled for at least 8,000 years, when prehistoric villages lay around the mouths of the rivers Dee and Don. The city has two universities, the University of Aberdeen, founded in 1495, and Robert Gordon University, which was awarded university status in 1992, making Aberdeen the educational centre of north-east Scotland.