of the color ultramarine.
beyond the sea.
a blue pigment consisting of powdered lapis lazuli.
a similar artificial blue pigment.
any of various other pigments.
a deep-blue color.

1590–1600; < Medieval Latin ultrāmarīnus, equivalent to Latin ultrā ultra- + marīnus marine

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World English Dictionary
ultramarine (ˌʌltrəməˈriːn)
1.  a blue pigment consisting of sodium and aluminium silicates and some sodium sulphide, obtained by powdering natural lapis lazuli or made synthetically: used in paints, printing ink, plastics, etc
2.  a vivid blue colour
3.  of the colour ultramarine
4.  from across the seas
[C17: from Medieval Latin ultramarinus, from ultrā beyond (see ultra-) + mare sea; so called because the lapis lazuli from which the pigment was made was imported from Asia]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

1598, "blue pigment made from lapis lazuli," from M.L. ultramarinus, lit. "beyond the sea," from ultra- "beyond" + marinus "of the sea." So called because the mineral was imported from Asia by sea.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica


pigment in the gem lapis lazuli, used by painters as early as the European Middle Ages. Ore containing the colour was ground, and the powdered lapis lazuli was separated from the other mineral matter. The pigment was first produced artificially in the late 1820s in France and Germany, being made from about equal amounts of china clay, sulfur, and sodium carbonate, with lesser amounts of silica and rosin or pitch. The mixture is fired slowly to 750 C (1,380 F) and cooled in a sealed furnace. Depending on the proportion of the ingredients, the shade varies from greenish to reddish blue

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Ultramarine blue was at one time ground lapis lazuli, but has long been made synthetically.
The stone has many uses, including jewelry and pigment for ultramarine paints.
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