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    Re: Voyaging the traditional way, Clay, venturing a bit off-topic
    From: Marvin Sebourn
    Date: 2004 Oct 31, 22:42 EST
    In a message dated 10/31/2004 8:51:39 PM Central Standard Time, FrankReedCT{at}AOL.COM writes:
    Fred H wrote:
    "The tongue is much more sensitive to texture than the fingers, and could probably make an assessment of whether a bottom was sand, silt, clay, etc much more accurately than the eye and finger."

    That rings a bell... I've definitely heard that before. Makes good sense, too!
    Frank R
    [ ] Mystic, Connecticut
    [X] Chicago, Illinois
    Geologists sometimes taste-differentiate minerals (NaCl / Sylvite, etc) and probably more often rely on textural tests, although it isn't so much the tongue that is used, as it is placing a bit of material between the upper and lower front teeth, pressing them together and moving them back and forth--pure clay is smooth, and there is a different textural feel for silt and sand. 
     
    There is a clay (advertised) toothpaste (Umbrian Clay?). A few years ago I spoke to the author of a journal article, "Geophagy in a Mississippi County" and he spoke of (as I remember) human consumption of clay as much as two - four ounces a day there, mainly in infants and young women.
     
    Marvin
    N5CL
       
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