Irish touchstone
Touchstone Touch"stone`, n. 1. (Min.) Lydian stone; basanite; -- so called because used to test the purity of gold and silver by the streak which is left upon the stone when it is rubbed by the metal. See {Basanite}. [1913 Webster]

2. Fig.: Any test or criterion by which the qualities of a thing are tried. --Hooker. [1913 Webster]

The foregoing doctrine affords us also a touchstone for the trial of spirits. --South. [1913 Webster]

{Irish touchstone} (Min.), basalt, the stone which composes the Giant's Causeway. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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  • Touchstone — Touch stone , n. 1. (Min.) Lydian stone; basanite; so called because used to test the purity of gold and silver by the streak which is left upon the stone when it is rubbed by the metal. See {Basanite}. [1913 Webster] 2. Fig.: Any test or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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