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cochineal

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cochineal


  2  definitions  found 
 
  From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]: 
 
  Cochineal  \Coch"i*neal\  (?;  277),  [Sp.  cochinilla  dim.  from  L. 
  coccineus,  coccinus  scarlet,  fr  coccum  the  kermes  berry,  G. 
  ?  berry,  especially  the  kermes  insect,  used  to  dye  scarlet, 
  as  the  cohineal  was  formerly  supposed  to  be  the  grain  or  seed 
  of  a  plant,  and  this  word  was  formerly  defined  to  be  the 
  grain  of  the  {Quercus  coccifera};  but  cf  also  Sp  cochinilla 
  wood  louse,  dim.  of  cochina  sow,  akin  to  F.  cochon  pig.] 
  A  dyestuff  consisting  of  the  dried  bodies  of  females  of  the 
  {Coccus  cacti},  an  insect  native  in  Mexico,  Central  America, 
  etc.,  and  found  on  several  species  of  cactus,  esp.  {Opuntia 
  cochinellifera}. 
 
  Note:  These  insects  are  gathered  from  the  plant,  killed  by 
  the  application  of  heat,  and  exposed  to  the  sun  to  dry. 
  When  dried  they  resemble  small  rough  berries  or  seeds, 
  of  a  brown  or  purple  color,  and  form  the  cochineal  of 
  the  shops,  which  is  used  for  making  carmine,  and  also 
  as  a  red  dye. 
 
  Note:  Cochineal  contains  as  its  essential  coloring  matter 
  carminic  acid,  a  purple  red  amorphous  substance  which 
  yields  carmine  red. 
 
  From  WordNet  r  1.6  [wn]: 
 
  cochineal 
  n  1:  a  red  dyestuff  consisting  of  dried  bodies  of  female 
  cochineal  insects 
  2:  Mexican  red  scale  insect  that  feeds  on  cacti;  the  source  of 
  a  red  dye  [syn:  {cochineal  insect},  {Dactylopius  coccus}] 




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