—brassish, adj./bras, brahs/, n.1. any of various metal alloys consisting mainly of copper and zinc.2. a utensil, ornament, or other article made of such an alloy.3. Music.a. See brass instrument.b. brass instruments collectively in a band or orchestra.4. metallic yellow; lemon, amber, or reddish yellow.5. Informal.a. high-ranking military officers.b. any very important officials.6. Informal. excessive self-assurance; impudence; effrontery.7. Mach. a replaceable semicylindrical shell, usually of bronze, used with another such to line a bearing; a half bushing. See diag. under exploded view.8. Brit. a memorial tablet or plaque, often incised with an effigy, coat of arms, or the like.9. Furniture. any piece of ornamental or functional hardware, as a drawer pull, made of brass.10. Brit. Slang. money.adj.11. of, made of, or pertaining to brass.12. composed for or using musical instruments made of brass.13. having the color brass.[bef. 1000; 1945-50 for def. 5; ME bras, OE braes; c. OFris bres copper, MLG bras metal]Syn. 6. cheek, nerve, brashness, gall, chutzpa.
* * *Brass was first used с 1200 BC in the Near East, then extensively in China after 220 BC, and soon thereafter by the Romans. In ancient documents, including the Bible, the term brass is often used to denote bronze (copper/tin alloy). The malleability of brass depends on its zinc content; brasses with more than 45% zinc are not workable. Alpha brasses contain less than 40% zinc; beta brasses (40–45% zinc) are less ductile than alpha brasses but stronger. A third group includes brasses with additional elements. Among these are lead brasses, which are more easily machined; naval and admiralty brasses, in which a small amount of tin improves resistance to corrosion by seawater; and aluminum brasses, which provide strength and corrosion resistance where the naval brasses may fail.
* * *▪ Nigeriatown and minor port, Rivers state, southern Nigeria, on the Gulf of Guinea, at the mouth of the Brass River (in the Niger Delta). A traditional fishing village of the Nembe branch of the Ijo people, it became a slave-trading port for the state of Brass (Nembe) in the early 19th century. Ruled by African merchant “houses,” which were encouraged by the European traders, the state's chief slave-collecting centres (Brass and Nembe) often sent war canoes into the interior—especially through Igbo country—to capture slaves to exchange for Western cloth, tools, spirits, and firearms. Brass was one of the last slave-exporting depots on the gulf; the rulers of the nearby Bonny kingdom used its concealed delta ports as an outlet for their slaves destined for markets in Brazil and Cuba after the British had gained control of the Bonny River.By the mid-19th century Brass had become a significant collecting point for palm oil and kernels. It remained a palm oil port under the Oil Rivers Protectorate and the Niger Coast Protectorate, but it was eclipsed in importance by Akassa, the port of the Royal Niger Company. It is now a fishing port and a local trade centre in palm produce, cassava, taro, and plantains.
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