1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Mull (fabric)

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21735131911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Volume 18 — Mull (fabric)

MULL. (1) A soft plain muslin exported largely from England to India, &c., and used also in some qualities for summer dresses in the home trade. The name is an abbreviation of the Hindu mulmul. (2) A word, derived from the same root as seen in “meal” and “mill,” meaning that which is ground or reduced in other ways to powder or small particles. Thus a snuff-box is in Scotland called a “mull,” from the early machines in which the tobacco was ground. Large snuff-mulls, which remained stationary on a table, as opposed to the small portable boxes, often took the form of a ram’s head ornamented in silver. Possibly from the ground or grated spices with which ale or wine is flavoured when heated, comes the expression “mulled,” as applied to such a beverage. The colloquial expression “to make a mull,” i.e. to muddle or make a failure of something, also perhaps connected with “to mull,” to reduce to powder. (3) The Scots word “mull,” meaning a promontory or headland, as the Mull of Galloway, the Mull of Kintyre, represents the Gaelic maol, cf. Icelandic mūli in the same sense; this may be the same as mūli, snout, cf. Ger. Maul.