from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A deposit of pebbles, gravel, and ferruginous sand in which diamonds may be found.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A deposit of pebbles, gravel, and ferruginous sand, in which the Brazilian diamond is usually found.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Gravel, coarse or fine, mixed with more or less sand; detrital material in general; the material in which Brazilian diamonds are found, as also gold to some extent.
This gravel, which is characterized in the first place by the fact that all its elements are rounded, and next by the presence of a large number of minerals (among which the most important are all the oxides of titanium, different oxides of iron, tourmaline, and a whole series of hydrated phosphates of complex composition), is called in the language of the country _cascalho_.
In the dry part of the river the extraction of the sand, stones, and cascalho is done solely by hand.
Since the century and a half that these rivers have been dug and redug, it may be admitted that wherever the cascalho has been easy of access it has been removed; and that wherever it has not been, little attempt has been made to work it.
The bed varies in thickness from one to four feet and the pebbles are of various kinds; but when there are many of a species called _Esmerilo preto_, the cascalho is considered to be rich in diamonds.
After the cascalho had been thus purified, it was carefully removed to the shed to be finally washed.
Each had a wooden plate, with which he dashed water upon the rough cascalho as it was thrown into the trough by another slave.
Each man had a small wooden platter, into which another slave, who stood behind him, put a shovelful of purified cascalho.
The land showed no sign of hills, but the banks were steep at this season, in places here and there based on ruddy sand and exposing strips of rude conglomerate, the _cascalho_ of the Brazil.
_cascalho_, and consists of loose gravel, the pebbles of which are rounded and polished, having at some previous era been subject to the action of running water.