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Armenian Earth Mineral Bole

Armenian Bole: Earth mineral
Bolus armenus

Lemnian or Armenian Bole is a yellowish gray or beige mineral with occasional oxidation. It was used primarily in medicines, since antiquity. Some distinctions are made between Lemnian Bole (yellowish tones) and true Armenian bole (reddish earthy clay) that are both native to Armenia. The increased levels of iron oxide gives Armenian Bole its distinctive red color. 
According to 'Minerals' by William Bingley, '...With the ancients, this mineral was considered an almost invaluable medicine. They procured it cheifly from Armenia, and the island of Lemnos, in the Grecian Archipelago." 
Further, "The Lemnian bole was held so sacred that it was dug in the presence of the priests of Venus, and, after having been mixed by them with goat's blood, was moulded into cakes, which were impressed with the figure of a goat, to authenticate them. 
Subtypes of bole are found in Armenia, Saxony, Tuscany, and Ireland. Armenia bole was notable and used in the East, more recently in toothpastes. 

Metallurgy and mineral wealth was a staple of Armenian civilizations of the Near East, Eastern Asia Minor, and Anatolia. Smelting and foundries from the Armenian plateau are found in the region of Asia Minor and are not always correctly attributed by modern archaeologists to the Armenian nation. Iznik pottery of Turkey often has characteristic red colors that are made from Armenian Bole clay. 
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