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Markel Announces Debt Offering

RICHMOND, Va., Aug. 9 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Markel Corporation (NYSE: MKL) announced today it has completed a public offering of $200 million aggregate principal amount of 7.35% senior notes due 2034. The net proceeds of the offering will be used to repay $110 million of indebtedness outstanding under the Company's revolving credit facility and the remaining proceeds will be used for general corporate purposes. Wachovia Securities is the sole book- running manager of the offering which is expected to close on August 13, 2004. A written prospectus relating to the offering may be obtained by contacting the Wachovia Securities Syndication Desk at 704-383-7727 or 866-309-6316 (Toll Free).

A shelf registration statement relating to these securities has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and has become effective. This announcement is not an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy the senior notes, nor will there be any offering or sale of the senior notes in any state where such offering or sale would be unlawful.

Markel Corporation markets and underwrites specialty insurance products and programs to a variety of niche markets. In each of these markets, the Company seeks to provide quality products and excellent customer service so that it can be a market leader. The financial goals of the Company are to earn consistent underwriting profits and superior investment returns to build shareholder value.

SOURCE  Markel Corporation
    -0-                             08/09/2004
    /CONTACT:  Bruce A. Kay of Markel Corporation, +1-804-747-0136/
    /Web site:

CO:  Markel Corporation
ST:  Virginia

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