A brownish-red, crystalline dye, C28H24N2O7, the main coloring matter of orchil, obtained from lichens or by treating orcinol with ammonia, and used as a biological stain, reagent, etc.
Webster's New World
(chemistry) A dye, related to litmus, that is extracted from the lichen Rocella tinctoria; used as a microscopic stain and as a food colouring.
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