Dictionary > Brazil wood

Brazil wood

Brazil wood
1. The wood of the oriental Caesalpinia Sapan; so called before the discovery of America.
2. A very heavy wood of a reddish colour, imported from Brazil and other tropical countries, for cabinet-work, and for dyeing. The best is the heartwood of Caesalpinia echinata, a leguminous tree; but other trees also yield it. An interior sort comes from jamaica, the timber of c. Braziliensis and c. Crista. This is often distinguished as Braziletto, but the better kind is also frequently so named.
Origin: oe. Brasil, LL. Brasile (cf. Pg. & sp. Brasil, pr. Bresil, pr. Bresil); perh. From sp. Or pg. Brasa a live coal (cf. Braze, Brasier); or ar. Vars plant for dyeing red or yellow. This name was given to the wood from its colour; and it is said that king Emanuel, of Portugal, gave the name Brazil to the country in south America on account of its producing this wood.

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