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reef, noun

Origin:
Australian English, English, Dutch, Low GermanShow more Related to Australian English reef lode or vein of auriferous quartz, transferred use of general English reef narrow ridge or chain of rocks lying at or near the surface of the water, from Dutch or Low German rif rib, ridge.
1. Geology. In a mine, that rock which surrounds the lode or vein, but which is itself not gold- or diamond-bearing. Also attributive.
1872 C.A. Payton Diamond Diggings 25There is a reef of rock and shale running round nearly all the rich tracts of ground.
1972 S. Lynne Glittering Gold 31The reef is a layer of rock with rounded pebbles in beds of fine-grained rock.
2. Usually with initial capital, the Reef: the Rand, see rand sense 2. Also attributive.
1905 L. Phillips Tvl Problems 49Meetings took place along the Reef from Boksburg to Krugersdorp.
1989 Reader’s Digest Illust. Hist. of S. Afr. 268The Chamber of Mines found a ready supply of cost-efficient labour for the Reef gold mines.
In a mine, that rock which surrounds the lode or vein, but which is itself not gold- or diamond-bearing. Also attributive.
the Rand, see rand2. Also attributive.

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18721989