Gum (Lac)

Current name

Information from the Getty AAT

lac (resin)

A resinous substance excreted by the lac insect, especially those who live on the twigs and soft new branches of several varieties of soapberry and acacia trees. Lac is used in the manufacture of varnishes (shellac), sealing wax (lac wax), and red colorants (lac dye) as early as ca. 1200 BCE in India. The word "lac" is the English version of Persian and Hindi words meaning "hundred thousand," indicating the large number of the tiny insects required to produce lac.

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Historical names