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MEDIEVAL-RELIGION  July 2006

MEDIEVAL-RELIGION July 2006

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Subject:

Re: Saint Benedict as priest

From:

Christopher Crockett <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

medieval-religion - Scholarly discussions of medieval religious culture <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 11 Jul 2006 07:33:19 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

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medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture

From: Revd Gordon Plumb <[log in to unmask]>

> I suspect the blue used lapis lazuli - very exensive!


it would seem so.

http://www.metmuseum.org/works_of_Art/objects_conservation/spring_2003/lapis.asp

and it looks like one or another form of copper was the source for the green
(duh):

http://www.ku.edu/~bookhist/medbook1.html

"The brown pigment, bistre, was made from burnt resinous wood boiled in lye,
and was used both as a separate color and as a shading over other pigments.
Verdigris was the most common green pigment. It was made by placing strips or
plates of copper above a quantity of vinegar. The resulting powder (copper
acetate) was scraped off the copper. It was often called Greek or Spanish
green. Verdigris was not ground into powder, but was soaked in wine or vinegar
and thickened by heating. A mixture of vinegar, egg yolk, and gum water was
used as a medium. The color could be tempered by the addition of vegetable
green pigments, or saffron. Terre verte and chrysocolla (malachite or copper
carbonate) were also common green pigments. They were sometimes used for
underpainting in gilding. Green pigment could also be extracted from plants
and stored in clothlets. Another green was vergaut, a mixture of indigo and
orpiment (blue and yellow). Gray, or veneda, was made from a mixture of black
pigment and white lead.

"Red ochre, the most common red pigment, was rarely used in manuscripts, but
commonly used in wall painting. Vermillion was obtained from cinnabar, or
through a chemical reaction of heating mercury and sulfur together to produce
mercuric sulphide. Mixed with white lead it formed a flesh color, olchus or
membrana. Red lead, minium or sandaraca, was prepared by heating white lead
for several days. It was necessary to stir the pot every two hours, and it was
suggested that one forego sleep for several days. It was recommended that
vermillion be added to the lead to make it more brilliant. Brazil wood dye was
the most useful red pigment for manuscripts. Wood shavings were soaked in a
solution of lye, wine, or urine for several hours and then alum was added. The
intensity of the color was a result of the quantity of alum added. Pigment was
mixed with glair for red ink or for glazing over illumination. It could be
precipitated into a powder and then mixed with gum to be made into paint.
Purple was derived from a mixture of azurite and brazil wood, or the juice of
bilberries and alum. A common purple pigment was folium, derived from the
seeds of turnsole. It was used in the form of clothlets, and cheese glue was
used as a medium. White was obtained by the use of white lead even though it
was poisonous and turned black in the presence of certain other pigments. It
was made by placing plates or strips of lead above vinegar. The white lead was
scraped off, and wine was used as a medium. It could not be mixed with
vermillion or orpiment, and so in those instances other white pigments such as
ground bones or egg shells were used. Orpiment (an arsenic compound) was
widely used for yellow, even though it was poisonous and rather coarse.
Because it was so coarse it was customary to add another pigment, yellow
ochre, to it which would give the painted surface a smoother appearance.
Yellow ochre was rarely used by itself in manuscripts, as it was more
appropriate for wall painting. Saffron was also used to produce a yellow
pigment, though it was not permanent."


c

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