The influence of the presence of limestone on the hydration of Portland cement was investigated. Blending of Portland cement with limestone was found to influence the hydrate assemblage of the hydrated cement. Thermodynamic calculations as well as experimental observations indicated that in the presence of limestone, monocarbonate instead of monosulfate was stable. Thermodynamic modelling showed that the stabilisation of monocarbonate in the presence of limestone indirectly stabilised ettringite leading to a corresponding increase of the total volume of the hydrate phase and a decrease of porosity. The measured difference in porosity between the "limestone-free" cement, which contained less than 0.3% CO2, and a cement containing 4% limestone, however, was much smaller than calculated. Coupling of thermodynamic modelling with a set of kinetic equations which described the dissolution of the clinker, predicted quantitatively the amount of hydrates. The quantities of ettringite, portlandite and amorphous phase as determined by TGA and XRD agreed well with the calculated amounts of these phases after different periods of time. The findings in this paper show that changes in the bulk composition of hydrating cements can be followed by coupled thermodynamic models. Comparison between experimental and modelled data helps to understand in more detail the dominating processes during cement hydration.