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a. Fine charcoal in stick form, made from the wood of the spindle tree.
b. A sketch or drawing made with this charcoal.
2. A black, friable band in bituminous coal, characterized by a fibrous structure and silky luster.
[French, spindle tree, charcoal made from its wood, from Vulgar Latin *fūsāgō, *fūsāgin-, spindle (formerly made from the wood of a spindle tree), from Latin fūsus.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
fusain(fjuːˈzeɪn; French fyzɛ̃)
1. (Art Terms) a fine charcoal pencil or stick made from the spindle tree
2. (Art Terms) a drawing done with such a pencil
3. (Elements & Compounds) a dull black brittle form of carbon resembling charcoal, found in certain coals
[C19: from French: spindle tree or charcoal made from it, from Vulgar Latin fūsāgō (unattested) a spindle (generally made from the spindle tree), from Latin fūsus]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014