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from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A white lead pigment, sometimes used in cosmetics.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. White lead, a hydrate of lead mixed with carbonate, formerly used as a white pigment, in cosmetics, and for medical purposes.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. White lead, used as a pigment. See White lead, under white.
  • n. A cosmetic containing white lead.
  • n. The native carbonate of lead.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. White lead; a mixture or compound of hydrate and carbonate of lead, produced by exposing the metal in thin plates to the vapor of vinegar.
  • To wash with ceruse; apply ceruse to as a cosmetic.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a poisonous white pigment that contains lead


Middle English, from Old French, from Latin cērussa.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French céruse, from Latin cērussa. (Wiktionary)



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