One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1The chemical element of atomic number 27, a hard silvery-white magnetic metal.
Cobalt is chiefly obtained as a byproduct from nickel and copper ores. It is a transition metal similar in many respects to nickel. Its main use is as a component of magnetic alloys and those designed for use at high temperatures
- ‘This packing arrangement is also observed for many metals, including rubidium, osmium, cobalt, zinc, and cadmium.’
- ‘They blended and heated plutonium with gallium and cobalt and then slowly cooled the molten mixture.’
- ‘Besides gold and diamonds, the area is rich in copper, uranium, palladium and cobalt, as well as coltan ore.’
- ‘We are already exporting gold and we have substantial resources of silver, uranium, nickel and cobalt, the deposits of which need further investigation.’
- ‘The slow growth rate is thought to enhance the absorption of heavy metals like copper and cobalt from sea water.’
- 1.1as modifier ‘a cobalt sky’short for cobalt blue
- ‘His stormy cobalt eyes glanced down at her and he sighed again.’
- ‘He took her hand and kissed it, his cobalt eyes twinkling.’
- ‘What snatches of blue sky she could see were deepening from azure to cobalt and she thought she saw the first star twinkling already.’
- ‘I got out my sketch book and showed him some of the paintings I'd done of lizard head spires piercing skies of cobalt and turpentine.’
- ‘His gaze caught mine and for a second his cobalt eyes were a mirror for the sun.’
- ‘Other houses' bathrooms are characterised by bright cobalt blues or pearl whites.’
- ‘The purple on his surcoat made his striking cobalt eyes seem deep violet.’
- ‘Not only were his eyes lacking their normal cobalt hue and his pupils disturbingly restricted but now his eyes were blood shot as well.’
- ‘On a walk through the five-acre garden you encounter great bushes of Blue Bonnet, whose huge flower heads vary from powder blue to cobalt.’
- ‘He lifted up his cobalt eyes to his friend for only a split second and then glanced back down.’
- ‘The softly tailored look is also very much in this season with glowing colours such as cobalt and rich greens coupled with subtly shaded creams and browns.’
- ‘It was of dark cobalt, running to purple, and had golden thread work all along the hem and sleeves.’
- ‘Side plates at each place setting are coloured a brilliant turquoise or patterned in cobalt or shaped like river boats.’
- ‘He muttered something in angry fluent French, as he tilted his head back and looked up at the star-dusted cobalt sky.’
- ‘It was February with cobalt skies, snappy air, and a fresh blanket of snow.’
- ‘Above, the serrated edge of the granite ridge cuts through the cobalt sky.’
- ‘He left a tip and walked outside to his cobalt truck, driving away only a few moments later.’
- ‘This past week in the forest park, the fiery foliage set against cobalt skies was a sight to behold.’
- ‘And then came the third line, a collection in shades of aquamarine, cobalt, ethereal blue, sky blue, and dream blue.’
- ‘The cloudless sky was the color of cobalt, so blue he felt he could breathe it in and out and become a part of it.’
Late 17th century: from German Kobalt ‘imp, demon’ (because the presence of cobalt-bearing ore made it more difficult to extract silver, and miners believed that it was harmful to the silver ore with which it occurred).
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