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Full text of "The Legacy Of Egypt"

Mechanical and Technical Processes. Materials 155
glass, and elaboration robs many of the pieces of a great deal
of their beauty Cloisonne work continues until the Roman
period. A more detailed description of ancient Egyptian
jewellery belongs to the realm of art rather than to the subject
of the present chapter, and is provided elsewhere.
From predynastic times agate, amethyst, green felspar, rock
crystal and chalcedony were obtained frorn the Eastern Desert,
malachite and turquoise from Sinai, and lapis lazuli from west-
ern Asia. Haematite and even jade or jadeite were also em-
ployed, but the source of supply is unknown. In the Middle
Kingdom red and green jasper make their appearance, both of
which seem to come from the Eastern Desert. Beryl, of which
emerald is the jewel form, does not occur until Ptolemaic times.
Other materials used in jewellery are a resin, resembling but not
identical with amber, which was used from the earliest times.
Coral was used from about the seventh century B.C. Mother of
pearl was known early, at any rate in Nubia, but pearls are un-
known until Ptolemaic times. The diamond, ruby, sapphire,
and opal are not found in ancient Egyptian jewellery.
Egyptian paintings, in general, were crude. Very little blend-
ing of colours was attempted by the painters, though some of
their efforts show the most astounding amount of detail. Their
colours were derived from the naturally occurring substances
and were of the following composition. The black was always
some form of carbon, such as soot or charcoal, the blue was
either azurite from Sinai (IVth Dyn.) or an artificial frit made
by heating silica, malachite, calcium carbonate and natron.
This is also known in the Fourth Dynasty. The brown was
ochre, a naturally occurring oxide of iron; the green was
powdered malachite (from Sinai) or a frit analogous to the
blue frit, possibly a mixture of blue frit and yellow ochre.
Grey pigment is comparatively rare, and consisted either of a
mixture of gypsum and charcoal or of yellow ochre and lamp-
black. Pink was a mixture of red and white pigment in dynastic