Definition of lapis lazuli in English:

lapis lazuli

(also lapis)

Pronunciation /ˌlapɪs ˈlazjʊli//ˌlapɪs ˈlazjʊlʌɪ/

noun

mass noun
  • 1A bright blue metamorphic rock consisting largely of lazurite, used for decoration and in jewellery.

    • ‘Precious stones like turquoise and lapis lazuli came from the West and silk from China via Central Asia.’
    • ‘The occurrences, particularly the Tultuy and Malaya Bystraya deposits, are in metasomatized dolonfitic marbles and have been worked for ornamental and architectural lapis sporadically since the mid-1870s.’
    • ‘The demons of the First Circle, the lowest class, only wear studs, though the wealthier of them can afford the more costly stones, like sapphires, emeralds, lapis, or diamonds respectively.’
    • ‘Some gemstones that cannot be placed in most commercial jewellery cleaners are: pearls, lapis lazuli, malachite, opals, coral, turquoise, and others.’
    • ‘For massive material such as turquoise or lapis lazuli, which is fashioned into cabochons and free-form shapes, the purity, durability, and color of the material contribute to its desirability.’
    • ‘Agates were apparently highly valued by the ancient Egyptians for their lapidary use and were mounted into gold with other precious stones such as lapis and emeralds.’
    • ‘Blue stones, such as lapis lazuli, and red stones are often added.’
    • ‘Afghanistan is the world's leading producer of the stone lapis lazuli, which is made into jewelry.’
    • ‘A beautifully decorated lyre from Ur depicts similar figures in lapis lazuli and shell.’
    • ‘Much Afghan jewelry features lapis lazuli, a navy blue semiprecious stone that's mined in the mountains.’
    • ‘Lazuli Port earned its name from its placement near the sea that, in color, much resembled the azure blue of the precious stone, often brought from overseas, called lapis lazuli.’
    • ‘Garnet, jade and lapis lazuli are crystals formed from rock which has quite literally transformed its shape and appearance.’
    • ‘Of the seven Sar-e-Sang mines, only mine number four produces exceptional lapis and is thought to be the source of the magnificent lazurite, sodalite, and afghanite specimens available today.’
    • ‘The calcite produces white streaks in the lapis and too much calcite will lower the value of the stone.’
    • ‘Triangles, which represent hands, called khamsa, ward off the evil eye, as do blue stones such as turquoise or lapis lazuli; red stones will stop bleeding or reduce inflammation.’
    • ‘Garnet, emerald, jade, and lapis lazuli are among the gemstones created by metamorphic processes.’
    • ‘Do not let your precious lapis be broken into stone for the stoneworker.’
    • ‘To the Buddhists, lapis lazuli brought peace of mind and equanimity and dispelled evil thoughts.’
    • ‘Maiden, in this book, is obsessed by stones, for example: opals, moonstones, lapis lazuli, pearls, diamonds and so on; in the later poems she is obsessed by roses.’
    • ‘It was a beautiful golden ring, decorated with coral and lapis lazuli.’
    1. 1.1 A bright blue pigment formerly made by crushing lapis lazuli.
      • ‘Instead of using traditional Japanese mineral pigments such as azurite, lapis, malachite and cinnabar mixed with gelatin, he employed his familiar oil paints and European gilding methods.’
      • ‘Instead I pull out my knife to scrape away the paint of her robe, stripping the blue lapis that drapes her shoulders and arms, flaking gold trim into a plastic bag.’
    2. 1.2 A bright blue colour.
      • ‘Donaldson's first job was for a private client who wanted her bathroom completely decorated in lapis lazuli.’
      • ‘The little girls wore strings of lapis lazuli, and the little boys blue Chinese Wellies.’
      • ‘This bird, oh so sleek in its aerodynamic coat of black, white, and iridescent lapis lazuli, is one of the most beautiful species anywhere.’
      • ‘These works ranged from swirling, meditative patterns of onyx and white to startling hues of lapis lazuli.’
      sky-blue, azure, cobalt, cobalt blue, sapphire, cerulean, navy, navy blue, saxe, saxe blue, oxford blue, cambridge blue, ultramarine, lapis lazuli, indigo, aquamarine, turquoise, teal, teal blue, cyan, of the colour of the sky, of the colour of the sea
      View synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English: from Latin lapis ‘stone’ and medieval Latin lazuli, genitive of lazulum, from Persian lāžward ‘lapis lazuli’. Compare with azure.

Pronunciation

lapis lazuli

/ˌlapɪs ˈlazjʊli//ˌlapɪs ˈlazjʊlʌɪ/