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any short stiff hair of an animal or plant
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the hair of domestic and wild hogs. Bristle consists of a broad base and a shaft, the upper part of which is separated into brushes, or flags. Histologically it is made up of squamous and cortical layers and a medulla. Bristle is similar to wool in chemical composition. Rigid and resilient, bristle has high tensile strength.

There are three basic sources of bristle. It may be obtained from leather factories after the processing of hog hides or from meat-packing plants after the scalding of carcasses. Bristle may also be obtained by combing the animals during the shedding period or by pulling. One hide yields 80 to 160 g of bristle. The amount and quality of bristles depend on the hog’s breed, age, and sex, as well as on the growing region, the season of slaughtering, and the means of collection. Bristle is used for the manufacture of brushes for cleaning and painting.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


A short stiff hair or hairlike structure on an animal or plant.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.