Turf, a brown or blackish fossil, consisting of a rich earth combined with the fibrous roots of vegetables, mineral oils, etc.

Turf differs from peat, only in its harder consistence ; the latter being obtained from peat-bogs, and the former is dug out of more solid ground, such as dry commons, on which cottagers exercise the right of turbary, by prescription : both species are chiefly used as fuel, in those counties where coal and wood are scarce. After the turf or peat are consumed, their ashes are employed cither as a Manure, or they may be advantageously strewed on land infected with Chafers. See vol. i. p. 485. - Farther, it appears from the experiment of M. Sage, that turf may be charred, or reduced to a state of cinder, in the same manner as Charcoal ; and thus serve as an excellent substitute for the latter; because it not only burns with a more intense heat, but is also of a longer duration.