blue, adjective and noun

Origin:
EnglishShow more Special senses of general English.
A. adjective
1. Geology. Diamond-mining. [see quotation 1882.] Of or pertaining to the unweathered diamond-bearing soil lying beneath the surface or ‘yellow’ soil.
1872 O.E.A. Schreiner in Eng. in Afr. Mar., 1974 17The men at work in the claims below seem mere moving specks, as they peck at the hard blue soil.
1882 J. Nixon Among Boers 152The rock now worked is known as the ‘blue rock’. It is loosely-textured rock of a dull blue colour, looking like a solidified mud.
1897 F.R. Statham S. Afr. as It Is 190The yellow soil from which they had been extracting diamonds came to a stop...Instead there was a pale blue gravel which seemed the end of everything. Really it was the beginning, for the blue soil turned out to be the true home of the diamond.
1939 M. Rorke Melina Rorke 57I had no interest in diamonds themselves — the stones were so common that they were frequently scuffed out of the ‘hard blue’ refuse from the mines, which formed our lovely garden walks.
1978 M. Hartmann Shadow of Leopard 8By late 1873 they had gathered enough money to acquire several claims — all of them containing the blue clay or Kimberlite that a few geologists said would be rich in the precious stones.
2. slang. [Transferred use of English blue intoxicated, drunk.] Under the influence of marijuana; boomed up, see boom noun. See also gerook.
1949 [see boomed up boom noun].
a1951 H.C. Bosman in V. Rosenberg Almost Forgotten Stories (1979) 102When you smoke good dagga you get blue in quite a number of ways.
1963 L.F. Freed Crime in S. Afr. 92The gangsters describe each other as being ‘blue’ when under the influence of dagga.
1978 [see kaartjie sense 1].
B. noun
1. Geology. Diamond-mining. Elliptical for blue ground.
1873 Diamond Field in B. Roberts Kimberley (1976) 123Diggers have gone down into the blue and report the finds are improving.
1886 J. Noble Cape of G.H.: Off. Handbk 194The extent of this hard rock is as yet unknown; though not quite all the ‘blue’ has been removed to this level, it has been recently ascertained that the basaltic rock encircles the entire mine.
1888 Cape Punch 4 Apr. 199The blue, i.e. the Kimberley diamondiferous ‘blue’.
1891 R. Smith Great Gold Lands 64At the surface the precious ‘blue’ is run in trucks by an endless rope to the drying grounds, which are some miles away, and some square miles in extent.
1913 C. Pettman Africanderisms 71The dark, greyish-blue soil which forms the matrix in which the diamonds are found..is also called ‘blue-clay’ or simply ‘the blue’.
1924 G. Baumann in Baumann & Bright Lost Republic (1940) 84The diamond fields had been worked down to the ‘blue,’ and many diggers, thinking they had struck ‘country rock’, abandoned or sold their claims.
c1936 S. & E. Afr. Yr Bk & Guide 499Permits can be obtained and a few hours profitably passed in inspecting the original hole, the first washing, when the mud is taken from the disintegrated blue and the machinery for crushing the hard lumps of blue.
1963 O. Doughty Early Diamond Days 94‘Blue’ — meaning diamondiferous soil.
2. [from sense A 2.] In the plural, the blues: a state of mind and emotion resulting from marijuana-smoking.
1963 L.F. Freed Crime in S. Afr. 208‘Blues’ were divided into three categories. There were the ‘terror blues’, the ‘recognising blues’ and the ‘happy blues’. Two were self-explanatory, but the ‘recognising blues’ represented a state in which the addict felt that he knew everybody around him and that he was not lonely.
Of or pertaining to the unweathered diamond-bearing soil lying beneath the surface or ‘yellow’ soil.
Under the influence of marijuana; boomed up, see boomnoun.
Elliptical for blue ground.
a state of mind and emotion resulting from marijuana-smoking.

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18721978