A Dictionary of Arts: Ochre.

A Dictionary of Arts, Manufactures, and Mines; containing A Clear Exposition of Their Principles and Practice

by Andrew Ure, M. D.;
F. R. S. M. G. S. Lond.: M. Acad. M. S. Philad.; S. PH. DOC. N. GERM. Ranow.; Mulh. Etc. Etc.

Illustrated with nearly fifteen hundred engravings on wood
Eleventh American, From The Last London Edition.
To which is appended, a Supplement of Recent Improvements to The Present Time.

New York: D Appleton & company, 200 Broadway. Philadelphia: George S. Appleton, 148 Chestnut St.


OCHRE, yellow and brown (Ocre, Fr.; Ocker, Germ.), is a native earthy mixture of silica and alumina, coloured by oxide of iron, with occasionally a little calcareous matter and magnesia. Ochre occurs in beds some feet thick, which lie generally above the oolite, are covered by sandstone and quartzose sands more or less ferruginous, and are accompanied by gray plastic clays, of a yellowish or reddish color; all of them substances which contribute more or less to its formation. The ochry earths are prepared for use by grinding under edge millstones, and elutriation. The yellow ochres may be easily rendered red or reddish brown by calcination in a reverberatory oven, which oxidizes their iron to a higher degree.

Native red ochre is called red chalk and reddle in England. It is an intimate mixture of clay and red iron ochre; is massive; of an earthy fracture; is brownish-red, blood-red, stains and writes red. The oxide of iron is sometimes so considerable, that the ochre may be reckoned an ore of that metal.

The ochre beds of England are in the iron sand, the lowest of the formations which intervene between chalk and oolites. Beds of fuller's earth alternate with the iron sand. The following is a section of the ochre pits at Shotover Hill, near Oxford:-
Beds of highly ferruginous grit, forming the summit of the hill ... 6 feet.
Gray sand ... 3do.
Ferruginous concretions ... 1
Yellow sand ... 6
Cream coloured loam ... 4
Ochre ... 0 6 inches.

Beneath this, there is a second bed of ochre, separated by a thing bed of clay.

Bole, or Armenian bole, called also Lemnian earth, and terra sigillata, because when refined it was stamped with a seal; is massive, with a conchoidal fracture, a feeble lustre, reddish-yellow or brown, a greasy feel; adheres to the tongue, spec. grav. 1.4 to 2.0. It occurs in the island of Stalimene (the ancient Lesbos), and in several other places, especially at Sienna; whence the brown pigment called terra di Siena.

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