One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A scum that forms on molten glass.
- ‘If a small quantity, even a pint of water were to be thrown into a crucible of glass in a melted or rather a melting state, while the scum or sandiver is upon its surface, the water would be converted instantly into steam so that an explosion would take place; and if the quantity of water were more considerable, the furnace would be blown down.’
Late Middle English: apparently from Old French suin de verre ‘exudation from glass’, from suer ‘to sweat’ + verre ‘glass’.
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