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fuller's earth

For those of you who are also curious, I looked up fuller's earth at
Excite.com's ref encyclopedia.
fuller's earth

                                       mineral substance characterized
by the property of absorbing basic
                                       colors and removing them from
oils. It is composed mainly of
                                       alumina, silica, iron oxides,
lime, magnesia, and water, in extremely
                                       variable proportions, and is
generally classified as a sedimentary
                                       clay. In color it may be whitish,
buff, brown, green, olive, or blue. It
                                       is semi plastic or non plastic
and may or may not disintegrate easily
                                       in water. It was originally used
in the fulling of wool to remove oil
                                       and grease but is now used
chiefly in bleaching and clarifying
                                       petroleum and secondarily in
refining edible oils. Fuller's earth is
                                       mined in many parts of the United
States, Georgia and Florida
                                       being the leading producers, and
in England near Reigate, Nutfield,
                                       and Bath. Before it can be used,
it has to be crushed and dried.

Harvey Schneider
<harvsch at earthlink_net>