red lead

red lead

[led]
noun
an orange to red, heavy, earthy, water-insoluble, poisonous powder, Pb 3 O 4 , obtained by heating litharge in the presence of air: used chiefly as a paint pigment, in the manufacture of glass and glazes, and in storage batteries.
Also called minium.
Compare litharge.


Origin:
1400–50; late Middle English

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World English Dictionary
red lead (lɛd)
 
n
Also called: minium a bright-red poisonous insoluble oxide of lead usually obtained as a powder by heating litharge in air. It is used as a pigment in paints. Formula: Pb3O4

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