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malachite
CATEGORY: geology
DEFINITION: A minor ore but a widespread mineral of copper; basic copper carbonate, green in color. It was first employed as a cosmetic and ointment for the eyes, to cut down the glare of the sun and discourage flies. The discovery that metal could be obtained from it was probably accidental and then it was used as a source of copper. The extensive deposits in Sinai were much exploited in antiquity. It was also used for oils and water colors and encrusted upon other materials as ornament.

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