bistre :

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  • n  a water-soluble brownish-yellow pigment made by boiling wood soot

  • A ghostly group of apostles in bistre (a soft soot brown) watch Christ ascend off the paper in the deft dreaminess of the quattrocento hand of Andrea Mantegna.
  • They could not, however, approach the beautiful, sure clarity with which Rem brandt set down, in a few streaks and slashes of bistre, a windmill facing the estuary from an old .

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