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Glossary

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B

  • barbiturate

    A group of drugs that reduce the activity of the central nervous system. They were used as sedatives or tranquillisers but have been replaced in clinical use now as they were found to be addictive.

  • barge (ceremonial watercraft)

    Watercraft, usually highly decorated and propelled by oar or paddle, used for transporting important persons, either alive or dead, on state occasions or for ceremonial visits

  • barometer

    Instruments for measuring atmospheric pressure.

  • barrow

    A two-wheeled handcart.

  • bas-relief

    Another term for ‘low-relief’. It refers to a sculpture whose image has a shallow depth.

  • bathythermograph

    Oceanographic instrument that measures and records temperature at various depths in the ocean; often used by ships underway.

  • battery

    Collection of voltaic cells that convert chemical energy into direct current (DC) electricity

  • battery locomotive

    Self-propelled electric vehicle which obtains electrical energy from storage batteries carried on the vehicle.

  • bawley

    sailing and fishing vessel

  • BCG

    Bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) is a weakened strain of the tuberculosis bacteria, which is used as a vaccination against TB(. Developed in 1908, it was first used on humans in 1921.

  • bead - pierced object

    Refers to small object, of any shape or material, pierced so that they may be strung or hung or attached, as by sewing.

  • beading (edging pattern)

    Enrichment consisting of a line of tiny beads; common on silver and furniture. LDDO.

  • beamscale

    Scales with a horizontal bar pivoting about a central fulcrum, creating equal-length arms; suspended from the ends of the arms are pans or baskets, in one of which is placed the item being weighed and in the other, a premeasured weight.

  • bed - furniture

    Generally, the sleeping places of humans and animals. Specifically, permanent pieces of furniture comprised of a bedstead, which is the wooden or metal support, and the bedding, including the mattress and cover.

  • bed cycle

    Invented by Dr Ludwig Guttman (1899-1980), a Jewish neurologist and surgeon, the bed cycle was used for exercise by paraplegics and tetraplegics

  • bed rest

    A support for a person in bed or confinement of a sick person to bed

  • bed warmer

    Device for warming beds. Usually metal, and containing embers from the fire.

  • bedpan

    Shallow containers made of metal, glass or plastic designed to be used for urination or defecation by people confined to bed.

  • bell - idiophone

    Percussion vessel consisting of a hollow object, usually of metal but in some cultures of hard clay, wood, or glass, which when struck emits a sound by the vibration of most of its mass; they are held in position at their vertex, the point farthest from their rim, and their zone of maximum vibration is towards the rim.

  • bell punch

    A device for validating thin card tickets on issue, usually with a numerical register. Normally associated with lightly used branch lines or halts.

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